“I have been coming to Taos on a regular basis for 50 years. Every year I have to go out to the church and check on it. It is fascinating because it is different every visit because of the day, time, season and weather conditions of each visit.
I always seem to be coming back to it to paint or draw.”
Robert Batson is an artist and retired architect who was born and raised in the Dallas, Texas area. He has been coming to Taos for over 40 years to relax, paint and draw. He has been drawing and painting for as long as he can remember and as a kid a new coloring book and box of Crayola crayons made him a happy boy. He has a Bachelor of Architecture degree from Texas Tech University and a Master of Arts degree from the University of Dallas. In his professional life he practiced architecture and taught architecture, art and art history. He is also a theatre set designer and has designed over 150 shows over the last 40 years for several theatres in the Dallas area.
Since retiring he enjoys drawing, painting, reading, cooking and NETFLIX.
He has traveled to China, France, Spain, Switzerland, Mexico, Guatemala and, his favorite, Peru. (He spent several years in Peru researching Inca architecture, which resulted in illustrations for two books on the subject.) The many photographs he has taken have inspired his paintings and drawings. He hopes to visit Florence, Italy in 2016 and thinks he can probably find something to draw there, not to mention the chance to see one of his favorite works of art – Donatello’s DAVID. He has explored most of the roads and backroads of the Taos/Santa Fe area.
The landscape, churches, old barns and houses, and rusty, old trucks are subjects of the watercolors and colored pencil drawings he is currently doing.
He has recently begun to rediscover the possibilities of chalk pastels and oil pastels, doing a series of small drawings of the aspen trees in the Taos Ski Valley as they turn in September and October.
Robert has worked in almost every painting and drawing medium. While working on his Master’s degree he did landscape-based abstract oil paintings and marker drawings, but now he is a “realist”.
The paintings and drawings he is doing now reflect his interest in color, texture, light, shade and shadow as well as architectural forms, symbols, building types and details.
As a watercolor artist he enjoys “pure” watercolor painting, but also likes to combine the paint with other mediums, especially colored pencil which he uses to bring out, and use, the texture of a good watercolor paper.
He also uses the pencils to “enhance” the textures he is trying to depict. It is a technique he developed as an architect doing renderings of buildings for himself and other architects.
Robert does not know if he has a philosophy about art except – “I can’t not do it.”