Al Benkin is a painter and assemblage artist. Painting stories through Benkin's personal visual language and iconography based on life and borrowed myths are an ongoing theme in Al's work. "Happy Ghosts" a term started by her late Grandmother, painter Juanita Beenken, are up cycled objects. They all have a history, but transform having new meaning in Al's assemblages: a fork for a hand, a rusted metal piece for the body of a deity etc. Elements of animism like hair, teeth, blood, are also found in some of Benkin's work veiling it with nostalgia and evidence of time & impermanence. Recently, Al studied under Bernhard Vennekohl, a master carpenter, learning how to better manipulate wood and metal with power tools and has been jig-sawing many of her recent foundations. Benkin also has studied under painter Harry Folsom, experimenting with the old masters techniques using egg whites and natural pigments and various topcoats. There are many more stories to come."
Selected Recent Shows
Winter 2012 Leviticus Gallery group show Bedstuy. Brooklyn, NY
October 2011 EastBridge "Hypnagosia" curator and participant LES NYC
Aug 2011 Leslie Lohman Gallery. Soho, NYC
Aug 2011 Niagara Gallery "Ghost-dreaming in NYC . curator and participant . NYC
Feb 2011 Tribes Gallery "Nuances of Storytelling" LES, NYC
June 2011 A.I.R. Gallery "Wish you Were Here" Dumbo, Brooklyn, NY
May 2011 3 Eggs Studies: "3HREE" Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY
Nov 2010 "Dolls of Lisbon" Pop Up Lisbon Art Group via Antagonist Movement Lisbon, Portugal
Sept 2010 BKV Factory's "Hue Menagerie" Curator/ participant Chelsea, NYC
Aug 2010 Convergence NYC at the Armory Midtown, NYC
May 2010 Feature Gallery "Free Art Show" LES, NYC
Feb 2010 X initiative. "BYOA" Chelsea, NYC
Appearances in Boutiques and Stores
Looseworld NYC, Feb '12-Current
Better Than Jam Brooklyn, Jan '12 - Current
Milux Home Soho, NYC Oct '11 - Current
Hillary Flowers Boutique LES NYC Sept '11 - Current
Winter 2012 Featured on Fox News 5's Butterfly Marketplace NYC
Fall 2011 Note in Pinned NYC for Co-Curated "Hypnagosia" Art Show at East Bridge NYC
Spring 2011 A Gathering of Tribes Magazine issue 13 NYC
May 2010 Winner May Art Bazaar's featured artist Lyons Weir Gallery NYC
Feb 2010 - Current Volunteer Murals for Blissful Bedrooms Bronx, NY
Antipodes meaning "opposite ends" suits my painted and assembled modern tales. These stories come from all corners and opposite reaches of my mind. I'm also inspired by Aldous Huxley's essay "Heaven and Hell" in which he talks about delving into the extreme reaches of a person's mind (antipodes), that aren't always accessible but can be reached through experimentations with diet, meditation, etc., One's magical potential; the capacity to reach the antipodes of our psyche makes Huxley's essay kindred with my visions.
Oil on tin
25.5 in. x 25.5 in.
Acrylic on canvas
12 x 12 in.
26 x 10 in.
Oil on canvas
16 x 20 in.
Oil on canvas
24 x 18 in.
Oil, mixed media on board
13.5 x 26 in.
3 - 6
432 Commercial Street | Provincetown, MA 02657 | (508) 487-0915
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September 30 - October 8: Saturday and Sunday 11am- 5pm
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