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Image of the Day, February 18, 2012

By Donna Poulton

Now in her eighties, Edie Roberson (b.1929) is creating the most compelling work of her career, blending realistic landscapes with absurdist and postmodern themes. Still employing the precision of her prior hyper-real technique, her most recent compositions position prosaic children’s toys in southern Utah’s remotest deserts.

Edie Roberson, Annie’s Trip to Southern Utah, 2005, acrylic on board, 27 x 36 in. Private Collection. Credit: Little Orphan Annie in Annie’s Trip to Southern Utah is on a road trip and she looks absurdly happy on her motorcycle, exhaust blowing from the tailpipe as she speeds through the desert wilderness. The intertext from the comic strip informs the viewer, however, that she is in danger -- the fictional character, Annie, was always being stalked by dangerous characters. The viewer brings that knowledge to the reading of the text/painting. The dark storm clouds on the horizon are met by vast uninhabited stretches of nameless red rock desert.

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