From John Yau's article, "How we Live--Paintings by Robert Birmelin, Eric Fischl, and Ed Paschke," Artforum
In depicting an instance of crowds moving past and through our perceptual field, Birmelin allows us to contemplate the turmoil imbedded in every moment of urban life. Tunnel vision is no longer an option. Instead, his compositions parallel the all inclusive eye of a movie camera. However, it should also be pointed out that Birmelin never resorts to mechanical aids. The paintings are based on sketches done from memory. They are complex reenactments: they address the fact that the world never quite corresponds to the shape of our perceptions.