Rob Howe

 

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Rob Howe honours the qualities of a scene, exploring that which may be unnoticed. His works are evocative rather than realistic, energised by a complex play of light and colour, the tilt of a tree or telegraph pole, the smudge of a horizontal shadow. People inhabit these spaces, tenderly portrayed in brush, the edges of their form enveloped by the light‑filled settings. His portraits communicate an impression where the space between the viewer and the subject is set at a neighbourly distance. The essence is captured, the superfluous edited out –what painter Fairfield Porter might describe as "a respect for things as they are".  Howe approaches realism with an abstract brush. His exterior portraits are awash in Australian sunlight, almost squinting to bring you into focus. We have our space and they have theirs.