Oasis Series, Site 6

Oasis Series, Site 6

GREGG CARBO (b. Washington, D.C., 1954)

Oasis Series, Site 6, 1983
oil stick on paper

Collection of the Longwood Center for the Visual Arts
The Jack Blanton Collection
Gift of Jack Blanton

Gregg Carbo earned his B.F.A. from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) in 1978. He began graduate studies there but then decided to forego further formal education in order to work as an artist without delay. In his mid-twenties he joined 1708 Gallery, immersing himself in the Richmond art scene and the life of a practicing artist.

His work is greatly influenced by his friend and former VCU professor Richard Carlyon (whose work is also in the Blanton Collection). Oasis Series, Site 6 (1983) exemplifies Carbo’s connection to the methods and philosophies Carlyon espoused. The medium and the act of putting it on paper constitute the subject matter. At first glance the work is simple in form and hues, yet closer inspection uncovers great subtleties in the layering of color and precision of shape and line. The name given to this series recognizes Carbo’s conviction that the act of making—and subsequently viewing—a work of art creates an “oasis” from the world, as it takes one from physical space into a psychological space where one is concerned not with things in themselves but with the experience of a moment in time. Given attention, this drawing offers the viewer an oasis of poetic and enigmatic simplicity.