Artist Q & A: Robyn Redish

“Bat Country” by Robyn Redish

     I think I was on Facebook one-day when I noticed a friend expressing the opinion that what some consider art was in fact not art, but something else.  In that half hazard way we sometimes comment I proceeded show the definition of art and to say that it’s all about perspective.  Needless to say I think I ended up coming off wrong (lol).  What I was intending to do was express that ones opinion does not make or not make something art. 

     I often relate collage art to hiphop & punk rock.  Hiphop in the sense that it takes from other elements to create something new.  Also in the way that like other artistic forms it was challenged as to if it was in fact a valid form of expression early on.  Well like punk rock & hiphop it actually is very valid.  It speaks to us all because of the ability to gravitate to that familiar imagery.  Old magazine clippings and other publications lay the ground work for collage artists to create.

     Which brings me to the subject of our latest edition of our q&a.  The talented Toronto artist Robyn Redish.  She has an eye for captivating imagery and a knack to make the separate images fit naturally.  In an era of instant gratification and at a glance judgements, her work makes you stop and look.  To appreciate the simplicity and juxtaposition in the subjects she chooses.  It’s like her works make poignant statements without intending to do so.  Enough of our perspective though.  Let’s check out hers.

What got you into art?

I’ve always loved doing arts and crafts since I can remember. My parents are both artists so I had access to paint and glue and markers and all that. I can recall doing collage-type pieces from the age of about 5 or 6, making paper dolls and and pictures. Art has been a hobby all my life, and in the last few years has it become a real passion for me.

Some artist get inspiration internally, while others find it in the world around them.  Where does your inspiration come from?

I think my main source of inspiration comes from the magazines, books, and pictures I use. I love seeing what can be changed or added to make it different. It’s really fun to mess around and see what I can make.

(Collage 2017) by Robyn Redish

Who were your biggest influences?

Biggest influences…hmm, I would list all the collage artists I see all over instagram but it would take forever. 

Would you say you were strictly a collage artist or do you experiment with other mediums? 

I’m not strictly a collage artist, but its definitely the medium for me. It puts my fine motor skills and love of vintage magazines and photography together. I used to do a lot of art journaling, watercolour painting, pastels,and mixed media. Eventually I just stuck with collage and it’s been my favourite ever since.

(Pastel Drawing from 2014) by Robyn Redish

You have an eye for making completely different pictures with different subject matter fit. Is that more just your style or is it to relay a particular message?

I just started making collages with pictures that I like, and my style has emerged from there. I like to make more simple collages, and play with perspective and scale.

By Robin Redish

Are you more of a student of newer artists, or older ones?

 I guess newer artists. 

What would you say a big challenge as a collage artist is?

I think the biggest challenge is that collage isn’t such a respected art form. Cutting and pasting seems like a craft that children do, perhaps some  people don’t really understand the work and thought that can go into it.

Your Dead Kennedy’s fanzine.  Was it done to kind of pay homage to Winston Smith?

I can’t take any credit for the thought behind it. I was lucky enough to be invited to participate by my friend Chad, (@computarded). I’m sure a lot of collage artists were influenced by Winston Smith, I can see some similarities in the pieces. but no, I don’t think this project was created as an homage to Smith.

Dear Abby (Collage for ‘Holiday In Mar-A-Lago’, Dead Kennedys fan-zine) by Robyn Redish

What music are you listening to lately?

I’m a huge (classic) rock fan, I love Queen, Springsteen, Meatloaf, The Band, CCR, The beatles. Recently I got into Joan Armatrading, she’s super cool. I also love Cat Stevens, Simon & Garfunkel, Donovan and Bob Dylan.

Is there a goal in what your doing artistically?

I think when the time is right,I’ll try to sell more prints, I would love to do album artwork. This has all started as a hobby, so whatever happens with it is just an exciting bonus.

Any advice for other artist?

Any advice I could come up with, everyone has already heard. So just make the art if you want to. And have fun.

“I hate driving” by Robyn Redish
“He who held the birds” by Robyn Redish

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