Robert Kushner, Ahavah, 72 x 72 inches, oil, acrylic, gold leaf on canvas, 2016

A new painting. Following a course of thought based on boldness and maximal visual activation.
Two raucous coordinating grids of red, pink, yellow, green, blue, black gray, lavender.
Then a huge white lily that is nearly being devoured by the background.
My own personal reference to some of the very early Matisse still lives where the oranges, lemons and carafes are going to be completely overwhelmed by the blue and white background textile as soon as Henri turns his back.
This and other new pieces will be shown at:
“Perennials and Portraits”

February 9 – March 11, 2017

Robert Kushner working at Shark's Ink. studio Two years ago, I painted a huge painting, Camellias and Cacti, on transparent fabric to install at Hakusasonso Kansetsu Museum in Kyoto, Japan.
One year ago,  I made a smaller version on canvas which depicted only camellia flowers and branches.  Bud and Barbara Shark of Shark’s Ink saw it when visiting my studio last November.  We had talked about doing a new print, and Bud immediately suggested working with this entire image. It was a bold and ambitious proposal. It took me a little while to get used to the idea, but I did and so we worked and worked and worked on it this last August at Bud’s studio in Lyons, Colorado. Et voilà, here it is.
We made 18 different litho plates, some of which had as many as three different colors on them. I used tusche, Xerox toner powder, litho crayon, water, salt, sugar, various resists and block outs to create the plates.  Proofing and color selection was complex but it all went smoothly. As we got near completion, adding the blocks of deep blue and blue violet, we all got excited at how good it was looking. The last step was the horizontal stripe of 22 K gold leaf and with that, the whole image pulled together and the colors started singing to each other.

Thanks Bud, Barbara, Evan and Roseanne.  It was a great and very fulfilling work session. And we now have a lovely print:  Morning, Noon, Night.

Robert Kushner's "Morning, Noon, Night," 2016
Robert Kushner, Morning Noon, Night, 2016
 27 X 75.75 inches, edition of 30, color lithograph with gold leaf,
printed in thirty colors from eighteen plates on white Rives BFK paper.
Published by Shark’s Ink.

[click on image to view larger]

FullSizeRender-2Robert Kushner, Peony Triumphant, 72 x 72 inches, 2016


Peonies only exist in red, pink and white.
Their season is absurdly short.
They require seriously cold winters to incubate their amazing profusion.
Their true glory is unknown to those in overly temperate climes.
To crown their abundance of petals, they are redolent with divine fragrance.
Smell is too common a word.
Whenever I gaze into a full blown peony, I (and many others) become instantly, irreversibly intoxicated.

— Robert Kushner

Emerging From the Shadows, A Survey of Women Artists Working in California, CoverI am so proud to see my mother, Dorothy Browdy Kushner’s works in print, listed with over 300 of her women colleagues. Below are some of the images recently published in Emerging from the Shadows: A Survey of Women Artists Working in California 1860-1960.  This four volume reference set has been a decades-long labor of love for the two authors, Maurine St. Gaudens and Joseph Morsman.
To learn more about California Modernist Dorothy Browdy Kushner, visit:
Click on the pages below to enlarge.
Dorothy Browdy Kushner, Emerging From the Shadows Sp 1
Dorothy Browdy Kushner, Emerging From the Shadows, sp 2
It was wonderful to visit Napa, CA in the riotous height of spring and particularly inspiring to work with a wildly talented, spirited, goofy, wonderful group of high school students.   Gathered together from all across the country for this one semester art immersion and academic program, I hope they learned some things, but I know that I felt renewed and restored by their optimism and buoyant energy. Drawing, drawing, painting the myriad of wild flowers and garden flowers at hand, then collectively composing and collaging this collection of blossoms done by the entire group was an education for them and a thrill for me.
“This week, Robert Kushner has expanded Oxbow students’ knowledge on botanical art and art
itself during his ten day residency. Just finishing the two­ week research project, Project­X,
students were introduced to Kushner by a couple of sticks, jars of ink and flowers. They learned
how to sharpen sticks into fountain pens in order to observationally paint flowers on thin
Japanese paper. Kushner draws a lot of his inspiration from traditional Japanese art and his
interest in the natural world. His work is nationally acclaimed as the catalyst for the Pattern and
Decoration movement where his natural elements are placed in abstract and geometric
atmospheres which ultimately contributes to both a decorative and modernist style. His visit
ended with a large­scaled accumulation of the flowers on a big slab of wood to create the effect
of a dream garden. Preparing for Spring Break, Oxbow students are enjoying the sunny Napa
days and are finally finishing up big research papers and projects in their Humanities classes.
After Spring Break, the Oxbow School will readily enter its conquest into Final Projects!”
– Emily Y., student

Oxbow School Spring Visiting Artist Lecture Series: Robert Kushner

March 16, 2016

Robert Kushner Tuesday, March 22, 7pm Visiting Artist Lecture Oxbow School, Napa, CA Since participating in the early years of the Pattern and Decoration Movement in the 1970’s, Robert Kushner has continued to address controversial issues involving decoration. Kushner draws from a unique range of influences, and his work combines organic representational elements with abstracted […]

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Robert Kushner at Jerald Melberg Gallery, March 12 – April 23, 2016

February 29, 2016

Robert Kushner: Paintings & Works on Paper March 12 – April 23, 2016 Please join Jerald Melberg Gallery for an exhibition of new paintings and works on paper by Robert Kushner. In this recent body of work, Kushner continues expanding the style he has worked in for decades: boldly colored, opulent paintings patterned with flowers […]

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Robert Kushner, “Tenderness”

December 11, 2015

Motifs can remain the same, but intentions often change over time.  The mood of 2014 becomes different in 2015.  “Tenderness and Thorns” mellows to “Tenderness.”  “Cacti and Camellias” turns into only pure white camellias.  Here is a brand new (nearly finished) painting:  “Tenderness,” 102″x 256″, oil and acrylic on seven panels.    

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Robert Kushner Tapestry Designs: Manufacture des Gobelins

November 24, 2015

In 2011, I was contacted by Manufacture des Gobelins, perhaps the most prestigious tapestry weaving house today, to inquire whether I might create a design to be woven into one of their tapestries.  Gobelins was created in the 1600s at the initiative of  Henry IV and was expanded under Louis XIV in 1662 to create tapestries […]

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Robert Kushner: Flora Mundus, Galleri DGV, Denmark

November 10, 2015

Robert Kushner FLORA MUNDUS November 14 – January 31, 2016 Galleri DGV Svendborg, Denmark

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