Studio: international art — 66.1915

Page: 185
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Charles Robinson

exquisite grace and charm, the broad features of
the design being rendered all the more gracious by
the delicate elaboration of the ornamental detail.
The coloured drawing shown here is supposed to
suggest an interlude of twilight calm between the
climax of summer’s passion and the beginning
of autumn’s satiety. Just above the entrance
to the deep heart of the wood, into which the
lovers have danced their passionate way, a group
of wood-nymphs are resting, while in the distance
others are languorously still echoing the dance

until they too begin
one by one to tire
and sink to rest in
the still air. It is
an enchanting
drawing, as beauti-
ful in its balanced
disposition of tones
as in the lovely
lines and curves
that build up the
design. For, al-
though we have
colour here, as in
other drawings of
the series, notably
in The Dancer—a
sumptuous thing,
wherein Mr. Robin-
son reaches his
high-water-mark as
a colorist — it is
through line that
his art speaks with
greatest appeal and
authority. More-
over, with the in-
finite variety of his
patterned pen-work
he can suggest
colour and tone.
He has the creative
sense of shape.
Look, for instance,
at the two gro-
tesque figures here
—the spectacled,
long - whiskered,
Scotsman, and the Household God seated on the
serpent’s coil—one of a set. Both these, of the
artist’s own invention all compact, are coloured,
but the black-and-white reproductions show how

complete they are in all pictorial suggestion ; they
are perfectly articulate with line and shape. Again,
note the graphic magic of Mr. Robinson’s live
pen-touch in the delightful little drawing, Going
down the Tube
Lift. This is a
page - illustration
from an unpub-
lished child’s
book of adventure
which the artist is
writing himself, a
book that should
be a joy for chil-
dren to look for-
ward to — when
the war is over—
and publishing is
itself again.

Meanwhile, Mr.

Robinson, turning
away perforce
from pictorial
wonderland, is de-
voting himself,
as a zealous
section -com-
mander in his local
Volunteer Train-
ing Corps, to
the stern realities
of drill, trench-
digging, and mili-
tary map-making,
in which last he is
as expert and sug-
gestive as he is in
illustrating a fairy-
tale. But this is
only to say that
the alertness of
his mind enables
him to use his pictorial powers as effectively in
a practical direction as in a fantastic. And at
the present moment it would appear more useful
to be able to give immediate graphic effect to
a reconnaissance of some hostile military opera-
tion than to visualise a poet’s fancy. With his
native sense of humour Mr. Robinson will always
preserve the balance between the practical and the
fantastic phases of his temperament, and enjoy the
expression of either. Who that has seen them can
forget his really laughable parodies of Albert Differ
and other revered old masters ?


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