Robert Tynes painting exhibit at LMC

Article Published: Mar. 20 | Modified: Mar. 22

On Friday, March 21, Lees-McRae will host an opening reception for artist Robert Tynes, whose exhibit of contemporary trompe l’oeil paintings will be on display from March 14 through April 11 in the King-Shivell Gallery at the College. This exhibit is free and open to the public.

“Robert Tynes is an extreme professional when it comes to teaching and fine art,” said Jason Sabbides, assistant professor of communication arts and design and King-Shivell Gallery manager. “His work is a cultivation of years of laborious work. He has perfected a technique, called trompe l’oeil, which means ‘to fool the eye.’ This group of work is an outstanding opportunity to view what great skill can be achieved through unwavering passion and dedication.”

A Chicago native, Tynes has held more than 25 solo exhibitions of his work in galleries, such as The Contemporary Museum in Honolulu, Hawaii; the Roswell Museum & Art Center in New Mexico; the Asheville Museum of Art and the Greenville Museum of Art in North Carolina; and Blue Spiral 1 in Asheville.

He has also participated in more than 150 group shows across the country. Some of the most significant of these were exhibitions held in the Columbus Museum of Art in Ohio, Lillian Heidenberg Gallery in New York and the H&W Bechtler Gallery in Charlotte. The latter exhibition, titled “Doubletake,” included works by Larry Bell, Gregory Gillespie, Duane Hanson, Marilyn Levine, Paul Sarkisian and Richard Shaw.

“My paintings combine abstract brush marks with trompe l’oeil illusionism,” Tynes said in his artist statement. “The juxtaposition of these seemingly opposite ways of working results in a dialectic approach to painting. The visual tension that exists in the work reflects the dualities and paradoxical nature of the world as I see it … Through the use of illusion, the work conveys both a sense of mystery and humor and reflects my longtime interests in surrealism and the psychology of perception.”

Tynes has also completed several large-scale commissions for The Doubletree Hotel in Kansas City, IBM Corporation’s Field Engineering Headquarters in Atlanta and the city of Charlotte’s Convention Center. After serving as director of the S. Tucker Cooke Gallery at UNC Asheville for more than 20 years, Tynes continues to teach full time as a professor of art in painting and drawing. He has also taught at the University of Hawaii, Humboldt State University in California and East Carolina University.

For more information about King-Shivell Gallery, contact Sabbides at (
For more information on Lees-McRae College, visit, or call (828) 898-5241.

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