Robert Hanson


Jan 7, 2012 – Apr 29, 2012

The delicacy of Robert Hanson’s sparsely rendered studies of seated female models belies their innate power. The drawings communicate a sense of humanity that seems simultaneously contemporary and timeless. Though the artist does not consider these drawings to be portraits, his familiarity with each of the models and the kinetic line quality he employs enables him to communicate something of each woman’s essence.

Tiny by contemporary standards, the drawings, usually less than 12 inches tall, are composed of carefully made lines and small marks that provide just enough critical information to make the figures seem perfectly complete. Hanson’s images of clothed models recall in their immediacy the elegant portrait drawings by Hans Holbein the Younger of King Henry VIII’s court. These recent drawings have a riveting, yet understated, humanness that reminds us of both our mortality and of how art may transcend it.

APEX is an ongoing series of exhibitions showcasing Northwest-based artists, curated by Bonnie Laing-Malcolmson, The Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Curator of Northwest Art. Supported in part by The Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Endowments for Northwest Art, The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, and the Exhibition Series Sponsors.