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Robin VanLear

Robin VanLear
CPAC: Who or what has influenced you locally and elsewhere?
Robin: Artists that I have collaborated with such as Mark Jenks, and Parade artists that I can’t start to mention without fearing to leave someone out. My husband, Jesse Rhinehart’s paintings and my daughter, Story Rhinehart’s writing and choreography. Other local artists - Painters like Alan Peters, Tim Haas and Dante Rodriguez; sculptors like Patti Fields, Ray Juaire and Don Harvey. Certainly Peter Minshall, Julie Taymor and Peter Schumann have had some influence. On the national and international scene for contemporary/modern artists I love HC Westerman, William T. Wiley, Andy Goldsworthy, Ed Kienholtz, George Segal, Ipoustaguy, plus, Wayne Thiebaud, David Hockney, Tanguy. Going back in history I admire Dali, John Singer Sargeant, Whistler, Vermeer, Da Vinci, Michelangelo.

CPAC: How do you generate new ideas?
Robin: Mostly by letting my mind wander. I find that that is the best way to accept and be influenced by what ever the world has to offer. Sometimes concepts or social issues will nag at me for ages before I see what I am supposed to do with them.

CPAC: What is the hardest part about creating?
Robin: Probably two parts - first is getting started and second is that point when you are almost finished and you have to decide just how far to go.

CPAC: What is the best moment you have had creating or presenting your work?
Robin: This is tough. Each year when Parade the Circle kicks off I start to cry. I also loved the performance series that Mark Jenks and I created for Lake View Cemetery and my first one person exhibition in Santa Barbara.

CPAC: Why have you chosen Cuyahoga County as a place to live and work?
Robin: I moved here from Santa Barbara, CA 20 years ago with my husband, daughter, dog and cat to work for the Cleveland Museum of Art and create a community arts event for the museum’s 75th anniversary. This event is Parade the Circle. I was also enticed to come because my mother and father lived in Cuyahoga County and my dad was quite ill with cancer. We wanted our daughter to have a chance to get to know him.

CPAC: What is your favorite place, event, or “hidden gem” in Cuyahoga County?
Robin: Wow, that’s tough! I love wandering around the industrial part of the flats were our Community Arts studio is. I also love exploring the back roads between Cleveland Heights and Munson Township where my mom lives.