Robin Hodgson b.1984 Kamloops/Tk’emlups

During these times of rapid social change, my mission is to amplify the complex stories of those living with disabilities into my sculpture and painting practice. My work also relates to everyone as a reminder that we are all only TAB’s (temporarily able bodied).

I create conceptual paintings where the process and the outcome are equally important, and I often experiment with new devices and tools to paint beyond the scale of my own body movements. Since receiving my BFA from Thompson Rivers University in 2013, my work has taken me down long roads of development to a place where I have found a process and style of my own. Working from a wheelchair, as a C5/6 quadriplegic, I have invented and adapted a number of tools to overcome my mobility restrictions, with the additional help of my assistants. My continued experimentation aims to develop a painting style unique to my disability. Through my figurative painting and adaptive process, I seek to transcend my disability to seek a deeper connection between the artist and the viewer.

The underlying narrative consistent through my work, is my investigation into the psychological and emotional experience of post-able-body life. By utilizing memory and intuition I am able to filter my disability through my work, often seeking to find humor amidst conflict or during times of strife. My paintings are mixed medium but primarily consist of acrylic and latex with hints of spray paint, enamel, and oil bar. I paint intuitively, with spontaneous applications and vigorous brush strokes, often layered over areas of fine detail and text. These layers reveal and evoke ideas reconsidered or purposefully left obscured, yet not entirely erased, suggesting a past left behind but not forgotten. Compositionally the work I do is influenced by the drama and symbolism of renaissance paintings. My process builds upon the practices of other notable disabled artists such as Frida Kahlo, Christy Brown, and Chuck Close. Recently I’ve been interested in researching new ways to interrupt the conventional painting process by creating tools that can replace the artist’s hand in my work.