Obscured Narratives : Works of Robert R. Votta
Ultimately, one will love one's desire more than that which was desired. - Friedrich Nietzsche   

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 Art, like just about every other creative undertaking, is always, to some extent, an indulgence in Nostalgia. The act of Creation is an attempt to capture and freeze time. In painting this has been true throughout its history — from Michaelangelo's nostalgia for God's creation of man to Jackson Pollock's nostalgia for the recording of the paint trails on his canvases. True, Pollock's theorized that “The modern artist is working with space and time, and expressing his feelings rather than illustrating.”, but that is still a sentiment of nostalgia. The reason I go on about nostalgia is that one of the criticisms of my work is that I indulge in it too much, that I need to exist in this time and place instead of the past. My point is that the act of physically "making art" seems more nostalgic than ever. This so-called 'digital" age is so bombarded by "culture" that it is essentially devoid of any. It is an unrelenting progression of abstraction and a disconnection with physical reality. In scientific (particularly medical) endeavors this is advantageous; it has resulted in - and will lead to - achievements that seemed impossible a relatively short time ago. Creative achievements, however, are also just data — homogenized and and diluted into a series of binary numbers that one can carry around in a cell phone, and the only version of reality that most Americans feel is from staged "survival" programs on television. At first glance, it would appear that the individual is superfluous — a dinosaur. That is one interpretation that people have been making for centuries; maybe it is more true now than ever before, but it is not the only view one can take. I am not an adversary of technology at all, the very fact that I am posting this diatribe digitally should indicate that. The web provides me with access to information - and more importantly - imagery, that would have taken forever to obtain years ago, and I use it constantly for reference and inspiration. Perhaps Keith Haring summed up my sentiments some years ago in this quote: "The best reason to paint is that there is no reason to paint..." So paint I do, and if my subject matter itself is a nostalgic indulgence of 1950's and 60's pulp illustration, then so be it. Which reminds me of another quote, correctly or not attributed to Yogi Berra: "Nostalgia is not what it used to be".
 More ramblings to follow.
  Click on the thumbnails to see a larger image. E-mail me through the 'Contact' link above for more information if you are interested in purchases or commissions.

The Ribbon of Space I'm Going Out For Cigarettes Vermilion Night  Click here for image detail. Waikiki Wigs.
Moonlight Passage The 4 Suspects Click here for image detail. Ambush On Asteroid L-7. Click here for image detail.
The Phantom Wingtip  Click here for image detail. Blue Circles Model with Rectangle - No. 5.
Duck-Girl & The Haunted Mansion The Replicants Beard Kits Puppet          Theater Striped Swimsuit
The Solemnity of St. Joseph The Nature Machine Click here for image detail. Eye of the Cosmos. Through the Smoke, She Heard the Voodoo Drum

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