Maine woodcarver Wayne Robbins (above) uses silvered knobs of driftwood for porpoises to jump over and swim through. WAYNE ROBBINS PHOTOS

Carving nature: Artist specializes in marine mammals

SOUTHWEST HARBOR — The Wendell Gilley Museum’s first “People-Nature-Art” presenter for 2022 seeks to share his passion for the sea and to inspire faithful stewardship of the Earth’s fragile ecosystem through his art.
Bath woodcarver and naturalist Wayne Robbins will speak about his artwork and its relationship to nature online at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 11. His presentation is free, but registration is required.

“People-Nature-Art” is the Gilley’s free monthly series that brings artists, writers, carvers and creative people to explore how nature and art interact in their work, and how their art affects their own approach to nature.
“The sea’s breathtaking beauty and its infinite varieties of flora and fauna are constant reminders that we must respect and help sustain the lifeblood of our planet,” Robbins says.

Raised on the Maine coast, Robbins was inspired as a youth to capture the essence of nature in wood. His appreciation of the innate beauty of wood helps him design pieces that maximize the beauty and grace of both the medium and the subject. He chooses from a variety of native and exotic woods. By selecting a wood that complements his subject, he says a synergy results that informs and guides his creative process. Then he uses various combinations of oils and waxes to give the sculpture an “almost wet” look. Each sculpture is unique and identified for its species, numbered, dated and signed by the artist.

Robbins was mentored by renowned Maine carvers Chippy Chase and Hank Tyler. His work is in private and public collections worldwide.

The Gilley’s longtime carver-in-residence, Steve Valleau, will join museum director Sean Charette in this wide-ranging discussion. Sign up to attend at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.