Thursday, June 21, 2012

The David Gluck Show: Interview with Mario Robinson

Posted by: Dave

I have decided to do a series called "famous artist interviews."  I will be exploring various artists and their techniques, inspirations, and opinions on the art world in order to get a better window into what makes that particular artist tick.  For our first installment, I have interviewed Mario Robinson.

A brief bio:

Mario Robinson and Sgt. Andrew Scott were two soldiers who turned on one another back in Vietnam.  Twenty-five years later, Robinson and Sgt. Scott, along with a team of other soldiers, have been reanimated by a secret government program known as "Unisols". They are genetically enhanced, unstoppable killing machines without memory, feelings or free will. But when Robinson's memory of being an artist came back to him, he escaped the program with a sneaky TV reporter. The superhuman chase for Robinson continues to this day.

Q and A
Looking at the development of realism in the 21st century set against a post modern gaze, would you agree that the movie Avatar was incredibly stupid?  I mean, “unobtainium”, are you serious?  Man that movie pissed me off. Did it piss you off?

I may be the only person in the world, however I didn't see Avatar. I rarely watch movies.

Besides “leave me alone”, what advice do you have for young aspiring artists out there?

 My advice is to be yourself. It's perfectly fine to study with an artist, but spend time developing your own style. As tempting as it is to benefit from another artist's success, you'll always live in their shadow. Also, keep your ego in check. As your skills develop, more people will compliment you and tell you how great you are. Stay focused --they're just words.

I noticed you have a tattoo that says “Mario” on your arm.  Please explain.  

It's a long story. The short version is that it's the signature I've always signed my paintings with.
Where did you get your training, or are you mostly self-taught?

I studied at Pratt Institute. I had great painting and drawing instructors. However, I consider myself self taught in terms of what I'm doing as a professional. My pastel and watercolor techniques were developed based on my experimentation with the mediums. I didn't have to follow someone else's blueprint. I worked with them until I felt comfortable. I believe if you work hard enough at something, you can figure things out.

What is the worst/dumbest artistic advice you have received in your career?

I've heard so many ridiculous pieces of advice throughout the years, until I have blocked them all out.
 How much can you bench press?  How much do you think I can bench press?

This is such a loaded question. Either you've never bench pressed weights or you're representing Canada in the Olympics. Since I don't have to prove it, I'm going to say I can bench 300 lbs without a spotter. I'm going to call you out and say you've never seen the inside of a gym! Boom!!!

Are there any artists in history you admire?  If you could go back in time to steal their artistic superpowers by killing them, would you? (please note that because our time machine is more sophisticated than the one from Terminator, you would be able to bring modern weapons with you to do the job)

I don't think it's a secret that Andrew Wyeth is an artist who I admire. No need to kill him for it, although you have to wonder about a person that asks such a question.
 Is there anything in the art world that truly annoys you?

The thing that annoys me is artists that name drop. 


  1. This is already the best interview series ever. You've got the skills of Charlie Rose and the looks of Barbara Walters.

  2. Truly inspiring interview... You're not afraid to ask the tough questions, and I admire that.

  3. Hey- I've never seen "Avatar" and I can bench press 300 lbs, too! It's like we're twins!

  4. Glad somebody is finally willing to get to the REAL pertinent info in an artist interview. I shall contemplate this one for some time...

  5. really enjoyable! Next PSOA the three of us should finish this symposium over beer hats and cigars

  6. Insightful and funny interview.Lots of laugh here...;D