Robert Schlegel lives and works is Banks, Oregon. Finding inspiration in his lush surroundings and the attempts of men to tame the landscape, Schlegel attempts to tame the uncharted land between realism and abstraction. Working from life, he paints his personal interpretation of the objects and forms he sees in the natural world.
Focusing on painting shadows and highlights, contrast forms the foundation of his paintings. While his compositions may seem static, his use of textured brush strokes, complementary colors and talent of perception enliven his works until they are a torrent of sensations. With this precarious energy the artist hopes to convey his response to the sensitivity of the land on which we live. Often times Schlegel paints houses that are not integrated into the landscape, but look as though they have just been lightly set there, ready to be relocated at any moment.
He was influenced early on by the works of Winslow Homer, Wyeth, and others in the Brandywine School. Edward Hopper’s work continues to be an inspiration, as are the landscape works of William Beckman, Robert Bechtle’s architectural realism, the color of Wolf Kahn, and the atmosphere of Russell Chatham.
Schlegel first began exhibiting pen and ink drawings in 1973 and has since expanded his medium to include oil, acrylic, print making and collage. His pieces have been shown across the Pacific Northwest and he has been included in the Artist of Oregon exhibition at the Portland Art Museum.