Artist Robin Rhode creates fantastic and playful digital animations that often have a darker undercurrent.
“As a South African,” Rhode says, “I feel obligated to create my own history by working with certain everyday materials that embody a sociopolitical narrative … This is my motivating force: I have to tell these stories … My voice will be heard. You can take away everything—I’m still going to make art. I’m not dependent on the economy, on the material, on the ideas. I’ve made art with chalk and on concrete walls, and I’m still going to do it.”
In Rhode’s gravity-defying videos—staged in locations that include city streets, his studio, and his family’s backyard—actors interact with chalk and charcoal drawings of everyday objects (chairs, pianos, bicycles, basketballs, skateboards) as if they were real. His dynamic narratives set up a dialogue between high art and popular culture, incorporating references to graffiti, art history, and recent political and social events.
Featured in the exhibition:
Robin Rhode, Piano Chair, 2011, digital animation, dimensions variable, 3:50 min., edition of 5, Courtesy of the artist and Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York and Hong Kong, © 2015 Robin Rhode
Robin Rhode, Zig Zag, 2011, digital animation, dimensions variable, 2:20 min., edition of 5, Courtesy of the artist and Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York and Hong Kong, © 2015 Robin Rhode
Organized by the North Carolina Museum of Art. This exhibition is made possible, in part, by the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources; the North Carolina Museum of Art Foundation, Inc.; and the William R. Kenan Jr. Endowment for Educational Exhibitions. Research for this exhibition was made possible by Ann and Jim Goodnight/The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Fund for Curatorial and Conservation Research and Travel.