Robin Dare with Still Life with Ear of Corn, 2006.
Image: Rick Singer Photography
"I live in Spokane, Washington and I like to draw shoes." Spokane artist Robin Dare takes a quirky approach to his art, combining creativity with everyday objects like vintage shoes, PEZ dispensers, and frozen turkeys. Never one to bow to the mainstream pressures of commercialism, Dare's highly detailed drawings reflect a surreal and nonlinear thinking process.
The essence of Dare's art comes from a worldview that falls outside of the normal bell curve. His creations reflect an uncommon synthesis of our common experience. From an early age Dare showed exceptional artistic talent. Dare recounts, "I can never remember a time when I didn't see myself as an artist. Some children have plans to be an artist when they grow up. I never had any other identity. My mother always made sure I had the opportunities to develop my interests further." Later, high school and college teachers recognizing his talent encouraged him to pursue it as a career. Dare matriculated through Eastern Washington University and received his BFA; in 1986 he received his MFA from Washington State University.
A notable event in his career occurred when Dare ran afoul of PEZ Candy, Inc. with his popular drawing, 'Shirley Temple in PEZland.' The drawing features a forest of PEZ dispensers adorned with the heads of famous figures including Teddy Roosevelt. PEZ sicced their lawyers on the artist and sent him a cease and desist letter. In typical Dare fashion, he now attaches the letter to each PEZland print he sells.
Dare's work displays a natural feel for balance and composition. Dare admits he is obsessive in rendering the details of his works, often spending days perfecting small details to match his inner vision of the finished work. This persnickety is evident in the studied accuracy and depth of the final product. New features continue to emerge long after the viewer has familiarized themselves with one of his works. He has an ardent following of art collectors throughout the United States who continue adding new Dare creations to their collections.
Dare has taught art and printmaking classes at universities. His specialty is printmaking. He is an old-school adherent who is recognized for his expertise in relief, intaglio, and stone lithography.
Pure talent, original vision, and old-world craftsmanship are embodied in Dare's art. He is an uncompromising purist with an unconventional perspective.