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Stephen Benwell

  • Stephen Benwell’s Art

    Stephen Benwell is a contemporary Australian artist who resides in Melbourne. His main field of interest is ceramics, though his exhibitions and collections also include paintings, drawings, and works on paper. The art of Benwell has found public recognition and acceptance, which brought him several notable awards and titles. In his works, the artist skillfully combines various artistic styles and shapes, creating unique and distinct art collections. Moreover, his works render a wide variety of social and individual themes and serve as a certain reaction to modern processes and phenomena. His exhibitions and collections serve as brilliant examples of the contemporary art as in position paper essay

    Biography of Benwell

    The biography of the artist helps to realize the concepts and style of his exhibitions and collections. Stephen Benwell was born in 1953 in Melbourne. In this city, the artist obtained his education and started an artistic career. Moreover, Melbourne is the place of his permanent residence and organization of art exhibitions and collections. Benwell has been involved in art throughout his entire life, though it became his hobby after the graduation from the college. The artist obtained the Diploma of Art and the Diploma of Education from the Victorian College and the Melbourne State College, respectively. In 2005, he received his Master of Fine Arts Degree at the Monash University. Apart from that, Benwell also participated in many study visits and educational events, which contributed to his artistic style.

    The artist won many awards and grants, which proves his unique artistic talent and vision of the contemporary art. In particular, he is a 5-time winner of the Sidney Myer Fund Australian Ceramic Award. Moreover, the artist is a participant of study tours in Greece and France. In Melbourne, the Deakin University granted him the Contemporary Small Sculpture Award for his contribution to the ceramics art and work in the field of sculpture. The artist’s collections are exhibited in Australia and far beyond its borders, including many Asian and European states. Annually, Benwell holds his exhibitions in different museums and art centers, and his collections always capture public attention and admiration.

    Art Collections and Concepts of Benwell

    Benwell is known for his small sculptures and ceramic statues. In his works, it is possible to observe various schools and movements, which altogether form a unique style of contemporary art. Particularly, the artist started with the recreation of figurines, inspired by the small statues of the 18th century. One can also observe the motives and style of the Greco-Roman period in his ceramic art objects. The critics identify Benwell’s art as a combination of classic and modern forms and a fusion of various movements that are normally controversial and opposite. For example, his artworks contain both nudity and innocence, pastel shades and sharp angles, fragility and solidity, animate and unanimated figures, among others. Another aspect of Benwell’s art is the description of both humans and objects in his artworks. Probably, these combinations and fusions are the key peculiarities of the artist’s style, which remains so distinct and attractive to the public.

    A great role in the art of Benwell belongs to the creation of male ceramic statues. In this case, the public can notice some motives from the ancient Greek and Roman visual arts. These motives can be well seen in his figurines. However, Benwell does not aim at idealizing male sculptures or creating any unrealistic shapes and forms. Moreover, his nude statues often lack the component of sexuality, which was common in earlier periods of ancient arts. In such a manner, the works of the artist represent both masculinity and innocence. Another important feature of Benwell’s art is the combination of shades and hues. Thus, the artist uses various colors and shadows to transfer his vision and ideas. The majority of his art objects looks bright, multicolor, and vivid, which can be observed in his cup sculpture.

    Benwell skillfully combines sculpture and fine arts in his practices. Every statue is not a mere object of ceramics but also a significant contribution to the sphere of painting, since the artist highly uses colors and drawings. The aesthetic value of Benwell’s works consists in the mixture of high culture and low culture, classical and modern motives, individual and social themes, as well as painting and sculptural elements. The artist admits that despite a formal degree in painting, he finds his vocation in sculpture and ceramics, in particular. Respectively, he started his career in ceramic art right after the graduation from the college and found it to be a suitable way to reveal his artistic potential and talent.

    Stephen Benwell is a famous Australian artist who works in the fields of ceramics, small sculptures, statues, works on paper, drawings, and paintings. In his art, Benwell often portraits male statues in a contemporary light, experimenting with the shapes, forms, colors, and ideas. The artist’s collections are exhibited in Australia and beyond its borders, including many Asian and European countries. For his contributions to art, Benwell was awarded many grants and prizes, which proves his high artistic talent and importance in the contemporary arts. Currently, the artist resides in Melbourne and continues working in the field of ceramics.