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 ROBERT HANLON

When I began making paintings I was 52 years old and had no training or experience. I had designed houses and furniture, though, and was very accustomed to using antique materials. I was especially drawn to the surfaces and patterns of antique painted boards and door panels. I scraped or “unpainted” these surfaces to create figures and landscapes but was soon adding pigmented shellac and lacquer to the surface as I had done on furniture. I had found my own process for making a painting - exposing beautiful random patterns of aged color. I never lost the timeless sense of holding in my hands an object with a past and imagining its future. Painting on antique paint provides constant suggestions of form, color and texture. It is full of suggestions. White, yellow, green and blue have been popular interior colors in the last two centuries, so I often find all the components of a landscape hidden in the paint. Using shellac, which dries very quickly, forces me to work very quickly and so I’m not given much time to think things over. My subjects include the salt marsh, sailboats, fish and goats, dancing and flying figures, the nude.