Original: oil on wood, 36 inches in diameter; © Lee Robinsong 1982
“Cortes Island Pastoral” was painted by Lee Robinsong in 1982 as one face of the two-sided wooden sign that once graced the outside entrance to Hollyhock. The sign hung under a shelter where the Hollyhock Gatehouse building now stands.
Inspired by the two-sided British inn signs of the 18th and 19th Centuries, the sign features “Cortes Island Pastoral” on one side and “Cortes Island Rococo” on the other. “Pastoral” is a snapshot of the original Hollyhock Farm and its community members circa 1982. In the centre of the image a hollyhock grows high over the farm, a reference to the prophecy of a gypsy fortune teller who told two of Hollyhock’s founders to “Look out for red hollyhocks growing high over the garden fence. They will be an important sign.”