"…light and darkness, brightness and obscurity, or if a more general expression is preferred, light and its absence, are necessary to the production of color…Color itself is a degree of darkness."
- Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
If color has an emotional value, then the seductiveness of color in the work of Chrys Roboras stands as a testament of its alluring power. The hues of browns, greens, reds and blues, in her landscapes and portraits produce a restless, sad, susceptible, anxious impression.
The vast allegorical landscapes, with the appearance of people emerging and disappearing, are immersed in a gloomy and melancholic application of color.
Roboras in mixing her colors in both her landscapes and portraits in a harmonious way invites the viewer into her dreams.
Her use of reds, browns and blues provide a grave and magnificent effect as to inspire sentiments of awe.
The color dictates the feeling in Roboras work. However even though color is the protagonist, the viewer cannot escape the presence of the brushstroke.
The brushstrokes are dynamic, and with the purpose to expose the hidden, well guarded secrets. Thick, short, and long brushstrokes in Roboras landscapes capture the essence of the subject and create an impression, rather than delving into details.
The intention of the color is to hide the truth, while the brushstroke wants to reveal it.
Just when we think we have captured the essence of colors and brushstrokes, we detect the figures in the never ending landscapes. Sometimes they appear really small, a tiny brushstroke struggling to emerge behind the color. Sometimes they appear bigger, never confronting the viewer, lost in the colorful vast landscape.
Roboras figures are enigmatic, and elusive. Her landscapes embrace these figures of emblematic of different emotions states of mind. Is the purpose of the artist to get the viewer involved with the psychological state of these figures? How are we to respond? It is obvious to the viewer that the figures exist in isolation, even when two figures are evident in the landscape. The sadness and isolation of the figures are in agreement with the solemn mood of the landscape. There is stillness in the figures even when movement is evident. Is it possible that Roboras landscapes can put the sorrows of the human condition into a consoling, redeeming perspective?
The landscape becomes the protector of the human spirit. We need to be reminded that our suffering is insignificant in comparison with the ways of nature, offering us a sense of humility as we bow to the incomprehensible tragedies that every life entails.
In her portraits, the human condition continues, but the people appear stronger and determined to be in charge of their fate. In the ‘Perseverance’, the man confronts the viewer with undeniable confidence. The few loose brushstrokes are bowing under the strength of the intense gaze of the man.
The portraits of women are strong and contemplative. The colors remain strong, but the brushstrokes become more manageable. The artist found a way to liberate the figures from the landscape. The little figures become strong portraits of people who are not afraid to face their daily struggles. The melancholic beauty of the lonely figure that the artist explored in the vast landscapes, finds its resolution in the intimacy of the portraits.
The lonely figure emerges again in Roboras sculptures. The stillness is stronger, as if the figures are frozen in time. Even when we see more than one figure, they appear disconnected and lost in their own thoughts. Some look ahead as if expecting something to happen. One sees a hint of Giacomettian depiction of loneliness. Figures representing human beings alone in the world, turned in on themselves and failing to communicate with their fellows, despite their overwhelming desire to reach out.
This exhibition suggests that Roboras strength is found in the psychological rending of her colors and figures.
There is a progression in her work as the vastness of the landscapes and tiny figures are replaced by the strong faces in her portraits. The tiny figure of the vast landscape becomes the leading character in her portraits.
The human drama continues, but her characters are stronger and capable to face the new demons.