When pushed to conform his art to an established style or school, Rodrigue’s answer usually surprised his inquisitors. Although mentioning occasionally Pop or Folk Art traditions, it is Abstract Art that, to the artist himself, best defines his style.
For Rodrigue, as he works within a canvas’s boundaries, shapes and colors are king. It is because of this abstract approach that he never tires of his subjects.
“I’m an Abstract Artist,” he said, “who happens to paint things people recognize. I’ve painted this way ever since my earliest Oak Trees.”
In the painting Uncle Bill’s Children, the canvas’s shape dictates Rodrigue’s design, strong in its abstraction and symmetry.
The title refers to Rodrigue’s uncle, Bill Benoit (1894-1985) of Vinton, Louisiana, where he and his wife Lucy Courrege Benoit (Rodrigue’s mother’s sister) owned and operated Benoit’s News Stand (est. 1921), followed by Benoit’s Variety (est. 1947). Rodrigue often paid respects to his relatives by linking them to his Cajun, Blue Dog, and Hurricane paintings.