top of page
  • Writer's pictureDavid Eichholtz

Tony Robbin Uses Geometry and Color to Convey Spatial Depth And Dimensional Complexity

Tony Robbin 2017-3, 2017 Oil on canvas 56 x 70 inches

Tony Robbin explores formal and aesthetic approaches to conveying the spatial fourth dimension using geometric vocabularies, patterning techniques, and planes of color. His current solo exhibition, HyperSpace: Line, Color, Form, Pattern, includes the following five large oil paintings measuring 56 x 70 created from 2017 to 2021.

Using a visual language with the formal elements of line, color, shape and patterned compositions in the two-dimensional picture plane and leveraging his more complex technical endeavors with mathematical calculations, algorithms, and computers, Robbin conveys his passion and career commitment to imagining, modeling, and picturing the fourth dimension in his artworks.

Robbin’s compositions are comprised of 3 major components: ground, geometry, and the planar shapes of color. However, he felt that the ground in his paintings became lost with the dense layers of rigorously geometric shapes and arrays of patterns. Therefore, he decided to bring the color back to the foreground with the lyrical and gestural overpainting. Metaphorically, the brushy layers also seem to reference layers of moisture, diffracted light, and distant astral bodies, like stars and moons, that provide atmospheric perspective when considering the complexities and vastness of space. Thus, in these paintings, the gestures seem to be yet another layer of complexity that continues Robbin’s approach to “place many spaces in the same space at the same time.” [1]

Tony Robbin

2019-1, 2019

Oil on canvas

56 x 70"

Tony Robbin 2021-5, 2021 2021 Oil on canvas 56 x 70"

Tony Robbin



Oil on canvas

56 x 70"

Tony Robbin

2020-1, 2020


Oil on canvas

56 x 70"

Artworks Copyright © Tony Robbin

Courtesy David Richard Gallery

All Photographs by Yao Zu Lu

[1] Tony Robbin, Email to David Eichholtz, April 21, 2023.

Selected Museum Collections That Own Robbin’s Artworks:

Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover Block Museum of Art Blanton Museum of Art, Austin Chrysler Museum, Norfolk College of Worster Art Museum Delaware State Museum, Wilmington The Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art, Gainesville Kyoto University Newberger Museum, Purchase, New York Orlando Museum of Art Polk Museum, Lakeland Florida Whitney Museum, New York

About Tony Robbin: Tony Robbin has had over 32 solo exhibitions of his painting and sculpture since his debut at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1974, and been included in over 100 group exhibitions in 12 countries. Tony Robbin: A Retrospective was shown at the Orlando Museum in 2011, and reprieved at the Foosaner Art Museum in 2018. Robbin is featured in the retrospectives of the P & D movement at LAMOCA and the Hessel Museum, as well as those at le Consortium Dijon/ MAMCO Geneva, and in the catalogues of those exhibitions. David Brody apprised Robbin’s work in the recent essay [2] Shadows of Reality, Tony Robbin's book was published by Yale University Press (YUP) in 2006, which argues that four-dimensional projective geometry is the mathematical system best suited to describe reality. He is also the author of the book Engineering a New Architecture, YUP in 1996, and also the book Fourfield: Computers, Art & the Fourth Dimension, published in 1992 by Bulfinch Press/ Little, Brown & Company. His 2011 memoir Mood Swings, a Painter's Life, is a Kindle book. Also, he has published a Kindle book, Essays 1969-2016. He has written 28 papers and articles, mostly for peer review publications, and lectured to professional organizations and university departments of art, physics, mathematics, computer science, architecture, and engineering in the United States, in Europe and Japan, including engineering society meetings in Atlanta, Copenhagen, Guilford, and Budapest. A pioneer in computer visualization of four-dimensional geometry. Since 1981, Robbin’s realtime rotation programs of four-dimensional figures have been useful for obtaining an intuitive feel for four-dimensional and quasicrystal space. Robbin holds the patent for the application of Quasicrystal geometry to architecture, and has implemented this geometry for a large-scale architectural sculpture at the Danish Technical University in Lyngby, Denmark, as well as one for the city of Jacksonville, Florida.

Contributed by:

David Eichholtz, Curator, Manager, Founder

David Richard Gallery, LLC

May 19, 2023, New York

9 views0 comments


bottom of page