Terrance Robinson

1972, Greenville, Mississippi –

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Terrance Robinson was born in 1972 in Greenville, Mississippi. After seeing the creative processes for drawing, quilting, sewing, and singing by his family during his adolescent years, he was inspired to be involved in the arts. He entered art competitions to measure his drawing and painting technical abilities against his peers and art students from other regions. He took art courses during his high school years with a goal to continue his art studies.

He enrolled at Mississippi Valley State University in Itta Bena on a full scholarship in 1992. While art club president, he organized several on- and off-campus exhibitions and assisted with mural projects in surrounding communities. He graduated with a B.A. degree (cum laude) in 1997. Robinson attended the University of Nebraska-Lincoln as a M.F.A. candidate and teaching assistant from 1997 to 2000, when he earned his graduate degree in Drawing and Printmaking. His work is widely exhibited, and he has taught at several institutions of higher learning including Claflin University, Orangeburg, South Carolina; Paine College, Augusta, Georgia; and Tougaloo College, Tougaloo, Mississippi.

Throughout his artistic career, he has experimented with a variety of media including drawing, painting, printmaking, sculpture, ceramic, and graphic design. In his drawings, he prides himself in creating rich values, textures, and shapes. Robinson’s images are elongated and stylized, many inspired by his personal experiences including his travels, his family, and working class people. Photography, sketchbook studies, and his imagination are utilized for his drawings that are often created in a series. His goal is to push and pull the medium to its limits, refining it to a distinctive style similar to chiaroscuro. Erasing, layering, scrubbing, softening, and tinting describe his process. Robinson’s passion for graphite has led him to study great artists’ styles and techniques to enhance his understanding and appreciation of mark making.

Terrance Robinson was included in the exhibition A Greater Spectrum: African American Artists of Nebraska 1912-2010 on view at the Museum of Nebraska Art from December 4, 2010 to April 3, 2011.


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Terrance Robinson, Self Portrait: The Graduate, graphite, 1999