Turner Carroll is thrilled to present a long-due look at one of New Mexico’s most innovative and important contemporary artists–Holly Roberts. In conjunction with her retrospective at the Griffin Museum of Photography in Massachusetts, Turner Carroll has curated a selection of important Holly Roberts works from her years as an art student in San Miguel de Allende, to her most recent mixed media works created in New Mexico in 2017.
New Mexico has long been home to some of our nation’s most acclaimed artists. So much so, that those of us fortunate enough to live in New Mexico tend to take these artists for granted until they are gone and major museums in other parts of the world tout their art. From an art historical viewpoint, Tonya Turner Carroll believes Holly Roberts is such an artist, and that we should stop and take note.
This retrospective at Turner Carroll represents the first opportunity to see an overview of Holly’s groundbreaking work spanning almost 40 years, and includes iconic works from each time period.
Holly Roberts’ unique style of applying paint and other materials to her photographs makes her an artistic pioneer. Roberts’ artistic training is as adventurous as her process. She obtained her BA in Fine Arts and MFA at art schools in Quito, Ecuador; San Miguel de Allende, Mexico; Santa Barbara, California; Tempe, Arizona; and Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Roberts says, “I have been experimenting with different ways of making images…(over) the years, but always with paint and photography as the driving forces. Where earlier pieces reflected psychological or emotional undercurrents, newer works make use of familiar or iconic stories to address tougher questions about man’s effect on the land and the animals that inhabit it. If I can find any one theme that runs through my work, it would be a subtle kind of loneliness or feeling of separateness, at times mixed with odd humor.”
“My photographic imagery is widely varied, all the way from specific portraits of people or animals to photos of rocks, leaves, or even dead moths—material I can use to build textures and surfaces…I am seduced by the magic of taking something and making it live as something else.”
Roberts’ unique vision earned her two National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, as well as landed her artworks in such esteemed museum collections as the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Norton Museum, Art Institute of Chicago, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and approximately twenty-five other museums. Already, two books have been published about her artwork.