Rob Vander Zee

On this page, you will see the different series of paintings Rob is currently creating. Rob finds his inspiration from the natural world, psychology, traveling and cultural exploration, science, mythology, and philosophy. Enjoy exploring this wonderful world he has created.


In “Luminescence”, Vander Zee reveals to us the light and harmony we find in nature while unearthing darker moods and depths as he takes us underground. The viewer seeps into the earth, drawn in by flashes of hot and cold colors, vines and roots that seems to search for the essence of beauty itself. While there, we float in liquid pools and cool underground rivers. We dwell amongst the fossils and elements that reveal to us our primal past. Vander Zee offers us a view into this world that connects us to the source of our beginnings and existence. He draws his inspiration from the land on which he lives – the glacier carved ravine that flows through the land near his wilderness home. The steep ravine reveals gnarled tree roots, native artefacts and ice-age fossil deposits. These are the elements that haunt his imagination as he visually explores and creates.

Masks, Myths and Man

In Masks, Myths and Man, Vander Zee explores our human depths and fragility while simultaneously connecting us to our theist past of nature-based deities and myth-haunted lands. He wants to engage in the world that once held so much mystery, awe and inspiration. It was a world wide open for the human imagination – a world to be explored and revered, cherished and honoured. He uses layers layers of thick paint & color to slowly reveal the deeper parts of our humanity that seem to lay dormant-just under our skin-while we allow our distractions to go unchecked in our modern world. He uses his paint to coax us back to a slow and calm examination of what we may have lost of ourselves both personally and as a world culture. In his “Broken” series, he uses bestial horns to tie his characters to a mythological presence. The young men in these portraits represent the “brokenness” many gay men feel as they face the societal and social cruelties that tear at their self-esteem and feelings of wholeness and self-acceptance. While on the outside, the gay community presents itself as celebratory and happy that we are finally finding an acceptance within society. Many men find that the damage incurred during their youth has many life-long consequences. He also has various types of masks to show his characters hiding or revealing the hidden parts of themselves.