Robin Collyer, sculptor, photographer (b at London, England 7 Mar 1949). Collyer immigrated to Canada in 1957. Educated at the ONTARIO COLLEGE OF ART AND DESIGN
, Toronto, in the late 1960s, by 1971 Robin Collyer had presented his first solo exhibition at the Carmen Lamanna Gallery. His early sculpture shows the influence of minimalism in its geometric design, abstraction and unadorned materials. Works like I'm Still a Young Man
(1973), which uses recognizable elements such as a pup tent and model airplane, however, marked the introduction of narrative elements into his work. By the mid-1980s Collyer had moved further away from his early minimalism to include photography and text on the surfaces of his sculptures. Constructed from elements and materials that retain some of their association with an established urban context of commerce, construction and mass media, these discrete objects preserve an open-ended narrative and function as contemporary metaphors. A recent series of works has involved the creation of photographs in which parts of the depicted scenes - billboard signs, for example - have been digitally altered in order to offer subtle comment on contemporary commercial culture.
Robin Collyer has exhibited his sculpture and photography across Canada and the United States, and in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, England and France. In 1987 he exhibited at Documenta 8 in Kassel, Germany, and in 1993 his work represented Canada at the Venice Biennale. In 2000, an exhibition of Collyer's photographs was mounted by the CANADIAN MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY PHOTOGRAPHY. The show later travelled to the Centre photographique d'Ile-de-France in Pontault-Combault, France.
NO TV/Stoabrokdaon finis
Fluorescent light boxes, Plexiglas, photocopies on newsprint, retail shelving, colour transparency (Duratrans), sheet aluminum, 1987, by Robin Collyer (courtesy National Gallery of Canada/Musée des Beaux-Arts du Canada, Ottawa).
Philip Monk, Robin Collyer: Idioms of Resistance (1993).