About the Artist

Robin Nuse (1952 – 2019) was a painter and visual artist who worked realistically in pastels and oils. Working primarily from her studios in her home in Hanover, New Hampshire and at a retreat on a former dairy farm in northern Vermont, she used her own photographs as inspiration for her subject matter. Light and color played an important role in much of her work. Her subjects ranged from barns and farms to skaters and figures in action in the landscape.

Robin in front of three generations of Nuse pastels in “Generations: Teachers/Artists/Students, July 5 – September 7, 2015 at Bryan Memorial Gallery in Jeffersonville, VT Robin’s pastel is on the right.

Robin was born into an artistic family. Her parents were accomplished musicians. Her paternal grandfather, Roy Cleveland Nuse, was a Pennsylvania impressionist painter who taught for years at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.

Robin painted with her grandfather, but from her point of view, not enough. She often spoke of her wish that she could have had more time to learn his technique, particularly his skill at mixing color and taking advantage of color relationships. Robin’s work reflects this fascination with color and with light.

After her youth in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, Robin attended Rhode Island School of Design where she majored in photography under the tutelage of Harry Callahan. Selections of her photographs were included in RSDI’s annual traveling compilations of exemplary work; several are held in museum collections of those compilations. Robin spent her senior year of college in Rome – a life changing experience generating a love of travel that lasted the rest of her life.

After returning from Europe, Robin moved to northern Vermont where she pursued her artistic interests, focusing personal time on photography and crafts. Professionally she worked variously as a docent at the Fleming Museum in Burlington, as an art therapist at the Vermont State Hospital in Waterbury (she received an MA in Art Therapy from Goddard College in Montpelier) and then as an art teacher in public schools in northwestern Vermont.

Robin resigned as a teacher in 1987, and began her own business, “Vermont Masquerades,” designing and making paper maché animal and harlequin masks. She sold these in craft shows throughout the Northeast. She also created computer graphics used in pre-school learning programs. At this time she returned to painting, which was her childhood love, participating in one of the first courses of study offered by the Vermont Studio School in Johnson, Vermont and studying with Carol Jones in Stowe, a realistic magazine illustrator and a portraitist.

Robin married in 1989, and was able to spend more time on her art. At this point in her career she concentrated on plein aire pastel works, taking advantage of the many landscape perspectives available on the picturesque abandoned dairy farm that was her new home in Vermont. She also found appealing subjects in Hanover, New Hampshire and surroundings. Over the years her work broadened in subject matter to include many elements of her family life in Hanover and the general beauty of the northern Vermont mountains. Over time, she gradually turned from outdoor painting to studio work, relying on photographs she selected with her artistic eye, and she increasingly worked in oils as opposed to pastels.

Robin Nuse died on May 3, 2019 at home in Hanover at the age of 67. She endured malignant melanoma for four years, but remained actively painting until the end of her life.

Robin’s work has been selected for juried shows throughout New England, including an honorable mention in the Land, Light, Air and Water show at Bryan Memorial Gallery in Jeffersonville, Vt. In 2007 she was awarded the Art Times Award at the Pastel Society of America’s 30th Annual exhibition. In 2000 and 2006, two of her paintings were on the covers of the Here in Hanover magazine. Bayview Press represents six of her paintings in their line of contemporary artist greeting cards. Her pastel, “Still Life with Three Pears” was depicted in the August 2015 issue of American Art Review. Her works are in numerous private collections in North America and Europe.

A retrospective exhibit of Robin Nuse’s art will be on display at the Howe Library in Hanover, NH from December 7 – 31, 2019.

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