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Robert Frazier

Robert Frazier

Artist Life Member

I’ve been with AAN in about every capacity since 1972…janitor (at first), artist, etc. until today as artistic director.

I was born in Ayer, MA. My father taught cryptography for Army Security there at Fort Devens after working with the earliest forerunners of the computer, including Turing’s bombe at Bletchley Park, England, during WWII. My mother was a librarian and an oil painter who studied with Emile Albert Gruppé in Gloucester as a teen and with Philip Burnham Hicken on Nantucket in her later years.

The code-breaking science of deciphering gibberish into plain text somehow has meshed with a penchant for deciphering the natural world with impressionistic imagery in my own painting, a craft I basically learned from my mother, tho in the mid-1970s I studied with Phil Hicken as well.

Artist Statement

I tend to paint plein air style, quick and loose, even when I’m in my studio. This allows me to unearth the mood of the subject that I am intrigued by. The details seem less important. I work in a limited spread of oil colors that my mother painted in — three blues, two reds, a brown, two yellows, and white, and often a guest color dictated by what is emerging in the work. I’m intrigued by weather, often making it the focus of a painting. Nantucket lacks dramatic geological features like mountains and tall forests, but it possesses a range of subtle features and an endless supply of big, glorious, ever-changing skies.