Saren Dobkins image

Saren Dobkins work is of an expressionist and multi-layered in its meaning and originates with a personal ‘story’. Saren explores conceptual constructs of who we are and how we interact within the world using symbols and metaphor. She is interested in the discrepancy of the self that exists within and the projection of an exterior persona, often in conflict with each other. She also tends to explore the nuances and tensions of personal relationships between lovers, friends, children and ourselves. Animals and birds appear in several works as a means of exploring our innate selves, the more subliminal, natural aspect of ourselves which we encounter on deeper reflection. They are symbolic of the freedom of our spirit in contrast to the physical restraints of our physical self and the mental conditions we place upon ourselves. The canvas is used as a metaphor for the “personal” universe of each character, the boundaries of the canvas symbolic of the boundaries of our own capacity to understand our world. Her style is bold, the lines directional and lyrical. One of the major forms of influence on her thinking and perceptions is literature and our construction of meaning through language and she attempts to extend this into visual form.
As an immigrant to this country from Zambia in 1976, she introduces the myriad of visual inputs and experiences she was exposed to as a child. A tendency towards bright, primary colours, strong dramatic forms, a sculptural weight to objects and above all, the representation of the figure to express the “story” are some examples. The human figure is representative of our vulnerable self, neither male nor female, in part still a “child” as we search for understanding, love and a sense of belonging. What is identity and who am I in relation to another? But above all, Saren expresses the joy of painting, as colour sound, a vibration and a passion.
Saren has participated in over 26 exhibitions, in the 20 years she has been practicing as a professional artist. Her work has been collected by both private and public collectors in USA, UK, New Zealand, Australia.