PREVIEWED: Mark Moore Fine Art is very pleased to present an Exclusive ARTSY Online Exhibition of new work by artist BEN WEINER titled “Colors Of You” on view now through February 5, 2023.
VIEW THIS SHOW NOW AT: https://bit.ly/3sqflxq
Weiner’s large-scale paintings combine elements of process-abstraction and still life painting to create a material history of his own existence.
By photographing paint and luxurious ephemera at close range, then using the resulting image as his subject, Ben Weiner creates works that pose a confusion of object, subject and medium. Weiner’s paintings harness the idolatrous fetishistic desire of consumer culture, the fashion industry, and the art world. Thus, his paintings self-critically describe the duality of their own identity as both transcendent creation and commercial item. Likewise, all of the themes and references in the paintings reinforce their status as consumer/art objects. Roland Bathes’ application of Freud’s concept of “the uncanny” to landscape photography is the pertinent reference.
Art Critic David Shapiro writes of the work: “Meditating on the rapturous designs of the ephemera of our time, Ben Weiner transforms prosaic objects such as aluminum foil, paint, and hair gel into ambiguous, often erotic landscapes of the mind. Weiner’s images are enlarged to the point of near unrecognizability, making the paintings hover on the brink of extreme representation and abstract sublimity. The altered scale combined with dramatic lighting and subtle photographic distortions produces an uncanny effect characteristic of the digital age.”
“Weiner’s large paintings are technically flawless and strikingly realistic, living up to still life’s reputation for naturalistic realism set by Parrhasios in ancient Greece. His involvement in the genre of still life is, however, not based merely in its ability as an effective vehicle for delivering realism but also for the power of objects to communicate metaphorically. In Weiner’s visions, styrofoam can be the ruins of commodity culture, while gold covered mannequins conjure fantasy narratives of transcendence through the decadence of love. The abstract method of communication inherent in still life painting reflects Weiner’s strongly felt belief in the power of implication.”
“While Weiner’s paintings are contemporary, particularly in his interest in the experience of visual disorientation, his techniques reflect an interest in preserving the most effective and archival artistic methods of the Old Masters. He uses Dutch paint and clove oil over Belgian linen to ensure images of great permanence. But, just as Weiner updates the ancient art of still life with photographic distortion, he also adds to his nearly scientifically-mixed palettes a number of prismatic synthetic hues.”
Ben Weiner (b. 1980, Burlington, VT) received his BA from Wesleyan University (CT). He also studied under Mexican muralist José Lazcarro at Universidad de las Americas (Mexico) and has worked closely with artists Jeff Koons, Kim Sooja and Amy Yoes as an assistant. He has exhibited his work widely across the United States and in Mexico with solo shows in Los Angeles, New York and Puebla, and group exhibitions in Chicago, New York, Miami, New Haven, Ridgefield, Los Angeles and Riverside. His paintings can be found in the Sammlung/Collection (Germany), the Progressive Collection (OH), and the Frederick R. Weisman Foundation Collection (CA). The artist lives and works in New York City.