Mixed-media collages, paintings explore urban path of L.A. River

Michelle Robinson
Wright Gallery
April 28–June 3
Artists' Reception
5 p.m. April 28
2nd Floor
Langford A

"Transmission," an exhibit of images by Michelle Robinson ’91, portraying the urban journey of the Los Angeles River, is on display from April 28 - June 5, 2015 at the Wright Gallery in the Langford A building at Texas A&M University.

Robinson’s images focus on the river’s passage through concrete wastelands, seminatural wilderness and a wide variety of other landscapes using film-based photography, collage and painting.

“I am interested in the river’s role as a conduit for power, communication, waste, and life,”  said Robinson, a character look development supervisor at Walt Disney Animation Studios and an outstanding alumna of Texas A&M’s College of Architecture.

“Throughout its length, it occupies a sort of ‘no­man’s land,’” she said. “Many people who live in the city aren’t really aware of its existence.”

Robinson focuses on portraying texture, age, wear and evidence of the passing of time.

“I try to create images that, while inspired by real places, also exist outside of that context and occupy something closer to a dream, or a memory,” she said.

“I’ve been involved in methodical, process-oriented art forms for some time because I like seeing the evidence of the hand in the final work, and I enjoy taking advantage of the opportunities for ‘happy accidents’ along the way,” she said.

She recently exhibited her work in a juried show at the Center for Fine Art Photography in Boulder, Colorado and in a Collage Artists of America member-juried show at the West Gallery at California State University, Northridge.

She will have a solo show at the Dairy Center for the Arts in Colorado this year.

Robinson has been an artist with Walt Disney Animation Studios for 21 years as an animator, modeler, rigger, visual development artist, and lighting artist.

She manages artists who create textures, hair and fur and physical qualities for characters in 3-D animated films. Her film credits include “Pocahontas,” “Fantasia 2000,” “Chicken Little,” “Bolt,” “Tangled,” “Wreck-It-Ralph,” and “Frozen.”

Robinson was part of a team nominated for a Visual Effects Society Award for Animated Character in an Animated Feature Film for her work on Vanellope, a razor-tongued, cart-racing character in “Wreck-It-Ralph.”

She has also been a mentor in Disney’s Artist Development Program, taught computer lighting and texturing at the California Institute for the Arts and served as a visiting artist at Texas A&M.

"Transmission" is the last in a series of exhibits at the Wright Gallery in the 2014-15 academic year that were funded in part by The Association of Former Students.

posted April 20, 2015