Have you met…Robert Otto Epstein?


An introduction can be a wonderful thing. You can meet interesting people, and make new friends. You can be introduced to your new favorite foods, books, music, or artist.

I’d like to introduce you to some of my favorite artists. Some of whom I’ve been familiar with for years, and others I’ve only recently been introduced to.

The person I’d like to introduce is the artist Robert Otto Epstein.

Air, 2012, 31 x 21 in, Pencil on paper.

Air, 2012, 31 x 21 in, Pencil on paper.

Robert Otto Epstein was born in Pittsburgh, PA in 1979.
He lives and works in Maplewood, NJ.
University of Pittsburgh, B.A.

At The Beach Wear, 2013, 19 x 16 in color pencil on paper

At The Beach Wear, 2013, 19 x 16 in color pencil on paper

“My work consists of drawings and paintings on paper based on vintage/1980s/1990s knitting designs for clothing and home decor. I explore the representation of the body inherent in instructional charts for garments, as well as the coded nature of the signs an symbols cast in torso and sleeve designs. The work couples the visual vocabulary of fabric diagrams with the digitization of 1980s era 8-bit data schemata.

My primary interests are in modes of production or ‘the machinery of making.’ I consider the body at work in the vain of Gilles Deleuze’s ‘desiring machine’—as a kind of round-the-clock factory model where the assembly of ‘being’ and ‘doing’ and its creative wares are one in the same.

I cull my source material from 80s and 90s knitting pattern books. From there I create a grid on paper and begin to draw, line-by-line and square-by-square, each ‘pixel’ of the pattern. I always work from bottom to top and from left to right, making sure to follow the pattern precisely. I work very systematically, even obsessively, painting each sign and symbol, and paying particular attention to every marker on the ‘map.’ As such, my paintings are as much about the repetitive, mechanistic process that I perform as they are about the final product.” ROE

Housedress Inspired Sweater,23 x 16, color pencil on paper

Housedress Inspired Sweater,23 x 16, color pencil on paper

Other material realting to Robert Otto Epstein.

Artist Website: Robert Otto Epstein.

Make Space: Robert Otto Epstein.

MoMa PS1 Studio Visit: Robert Otto Epstein.

Cureeo: Robert Otto Epstein.

If you liked this introduction please check out the Previous and Next.

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2 thoughts on “Have you met…Robert Otto Epstein?

  1. Pingback: Have you met…Eve Lateiner? | Painter's Progress

  2. Pingback: Have you met…Rebecca Murtaugh. | Painter's Progress

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