Alexander ROBINSON (1867 – 1952)

A 1908 painting by American artist Alexander Robinson depicting a woman with parrots. A work in movement, with geometric shapes and shimmering colors of a great modernity.

Oil on canvas
Signed in the lower middle
Dated 1908 and monogrammed lat the bottom right
Dimensions: 100 x 80 cm
With frame : 118 x 98 cm
Price: 15,000 euros

The parrot in painting, a symbolic animal

His image has inspired many artists. Already known in ancient times, the animal was highly considered for its ability to repeat words. We find the parrot associated with subjects such as the Annunciation, paradise or the Virgins with child because it could pronounce the word “Ave”. The parrot, symbol of purity and innocence, also appears in the portraits of couples in the paintings of the Northern School from the 15th to the 17th century. It is the attribute of the wife.
Finally, the exotic animal, the parrot, can be represented because of its rarity and its price, as an indicator of social status. Whoever owns a parrot belongs to the wealthiest social class. Modern painters like Manet,” the woman with a parrot, 1866 “or Frida Kahlo, in her self-portrait with parrots, depict them.

A work in movement with geometric shapes and shimmering colors

Alexander Robinson composes with great dexterity a mosaic of colors and mixed shapes. He transports us into his flamboyant pictorial universe: a woman in a colorful dress and scarf, three brightly feathered parrots, a bouquet of flowers stand out against a background of complex patterns.
We don’t really know which way to look at the painting anymore. The composition seems to be fragmented as if shards of glass were bursting out from all sides. The work with geometric shapes and shimmering colors is dynamic and lively.


Born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire in the northeastern United States.
Alexander Robinson studied in Massachusetts at the Lowell Institute before going to Paris and enrolling at the Académie Julian under Henri-Lucien Doucet and Jean-Joseph Benjamin-Constant.
He exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants, the Autumn Salon and the Tuileries Salon. He also appeared in exhibitions in Ghent, Brussels, New York and London.
Alexander Robinson was particularly drawn to watercolor and upon returning to the United States, he joined several art associations, including the New York Water Color Club, the Philadelphia Water Color Club, and the Chicago Water Color Club, as well as the American Water Color Society and the Salmagundi Club. Robinson maintained his European connections through membership in the National Watercolor Society and the United Arts Club of London, among others, and traveled frequently to Belgium and Venice, where the distemper painting Santa Maria della Salute on Giudecca Island was completed in 1907. In October 1911, the Detroit Museum of Art held an exhibition of over fifty of the artist’s paintings. He also exhibits at the Boston Art Club, the Pennsylvania Academy and the Art Institute of Chicago. He teaches in Venice, Belgium and Holland.


– Who Was Who in American Art, 1999; Detroit Area Library Network website,

– Benezit


– Ixelles, Belgium

– New Orleans Museum

– Academy of Fine Arts of Philadelphia

– Toledo, Ohio