ABOUT

About Me

Biography

I am a Visual Artist based in the beautiful Douglas Valley in the North West of England. I embarked on an MA in Contemporary Art after completing a BA Hons Fine Art at the University of Salford 2017 – 2020, in which I graduated with First-Class Honours.  I won the Howarth Life Drawing Prize in 2018 and travelled to Berlin with the bursary award. My current practice focuses predominantly on painting. I explore the local landscape and react to my environs; researching through photography, video, satellite maps, note taking, poetry, sense connections to my surroundings, and psychological aspects such as dreams. I then translate this information to produce various degrees of abstracted interpretations of the landscape.

Artist Statement

My practice begins by the simple act of walking. I stake out my territory. A lyrical loiterer I am. Inspiration springs from the absorption of the landscape through the senses – touch, seeing, hearing, and feeling in a spiritual sense: for our connection to the land is deeper than purely physical, the memories we gather vibrate and reverberate within our hearts and minds.  The tool of abstraction enables me to configure my message. I am interested in psychogeography and the world around me which I interpret through thought, philosophy, and as an idea. Paradoxically, the world appears in a ‘concrete’ existence; however, I don’t attempt to represent external reality but seek to portray the world through shapes, colours, and textures. Rural/ suburban/urban districts, the edge lands, where the city meets the countryside are my subjects. My work is inspired by artists including Victor Pasmore, Ivon Hitchen, Albert Irvin, Peter Lanyon, and Adrian Berg. By studying these artist’s techniques and manner of observing and painting the landscape, I contextualise my work through the observation of their compositions, use of colour, and brushmarks. Aboriginal artist's such as Mark Nodea also inspire me, not just the visual impact of the images they produce but also the spiritual connection of the native people to the land and aspects of their culture such as the ‘walkabout’ and ‘Dreamtime’.

© 2020 Richard James Benbow

Appley Bridge, England, UK

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