“Any artist who claims that they are not seeking an audience is lying. We sell our souls to ones who have polarized ideas and passions, conversely hoping they will listen”
The Artist, Arthur Benjamins, was born in Rotterdam, Holland. He spent his childhood in Rhodesia, moved to the UK in1974 and since 2014 lives in Phoenix, Arizona.
Arthur's motor racing trademark was photo-realism and it took hold in the early 1980s. Since that time, the UK motoring media has called him 'one of ours' . Over the years, the British media has pinpointed his motor racing, aviation and record breaking original artworks, as he pioneered a painting style that has since been mimicked by innumerable other painters. His works have been featured in countless newspapers, periodicals, magazines and books. He has also been featured on television - BBC 'Top Gear' and on BBC News at 10. He is considered frequently to be the market leader in paintings of Land-and-Water Speed record breakers. He is also a 'supporting artiste' and has appeared in TV adverts, TV soaps and several blockbuster feature films.
He has hosted exhibitions in the UK, North America, in Venice, Malta, Jersey, Holland and also in Finland. Even his pioneering choice of raw materials set his work apart from the establishment. It was an applecart that he was never afraid to upturn. At the end of the 20th Century, he declared that he was ready for a fresh challenge and he turned towards a period of transition that would coincide with the New Millennium. Unlike his fellow countryman, Piet Mondrian, who was a revisiting painter and would change a work once, or even several times, Benjamins proceeds to paint continual narratives. Every one of his works of art forms an opinion, or a timely view of the subject that is being portrayed.
In support of this view, Benjamins has stated: "Once a sentence has been spoken, those words cannot and should not be recalled. That opinion, rhetoric, or statement, as flattering, or hurtful, or hateful as it might be, is set in stone. Every one of my paintings, in sequence, is a snapshot, a single frame of film, or the lyric of a ballad, an original which can never be undone."
Over the centuries, many styles of painting have culminated in myriad genres, of which many dwindled in obscurity, although some prospered and were perpetuated into modern day vernacular. The 1960s’ iconic Pop-Art images created by Andy Warhol and Jasper Johns covered a specific range and, although several movements would like to claim him similarly, Benjamins’ work extends beyond those, to where colour, composition and textures become elemental components of the discovery processes, where the multi-divergence of viewers’ perceptions and cursory explanations become obvious.
A mental space unfolds with a very clear salute to Singularity. Benjamins incorporates a far wider range of iconic imagery, of which much is in the process of extending into, or is already well beyond the consideration of mere ephemera.
His ‘Benjaminsarian’ universe avoids artistic arrogances of choice and rendition of icons, the progression and regression of subject matter in two-and-three dimensional forms become an epicentre, wherein, in a solitary snapshot, the raised surface, or texture, reforms into a voluble substrate, the next, as an underscore, or shaded emphasis. His work encompasses strong, clear images with which observers can relate, recognise and identify. This is art taken to innovative form that is sharp, precise and strong in colour and surface tactility, while remaining stoically individualistic.
Benjamins avoids any muddiness, by displaying almost no sentimentality, emphasised by the lack of the painter’s doubting soul, trembling hand, or lack of direction. Benjamins' jaw remains set firm. His stance is confident, yet emotive and inspirational. With a re-emergence of stark, central imagery that dominates his work, his path of Abstract Iconography and his revisitation of Neoplasticism in his idiom forms a completely new genre, which, once again, upsets that staid applecart.
You can buy into this novel and immensely rewarding approach. Benjamins undertakes commissions of almost any size, for almost any purpose, and the end result is an expression of respect, adulation and even love, not just of the art but the artist and the subject matter as well.
The integrity of Art lives with Benjamins.