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Ben Charles Weiner

I’m interested in the way a microscopic view allows a person an intimate knowledge of the workings of a subject.

 

Ben Weiner is a New York-based contemporary artist, whose work bridges the seemingly opposite styles of hyper-realism and process-based abstraction. As a free-thinking abstract artist, Weiner always challenges himself, as well as his audience, to adapt to new mediums and perspectives in modern consumerism.

Fascinated by the substances we put into our bodies, Weiner uses art as an extension of his curiosity and judgement to challenge what we think about the products we buy and consume every day. Weiner has spoken of being greatly influenced by his parents, who were both scientists and unconventional free-thinkers, self-labeled as ‘hippies’. Weiner’s work often depicts materials used to create illusions in art and everyday life, such as oil paint on a palette, hair gel, and jewels and beeswax used in sculpture. From these photos, Weiner paints beautiful large-scale compositions in oil. Playing with the ambiguity of his paintings, and choosing “incongruous but evocative titles” gives him the freedom to explore the complex relationship between our imaginations and the external cues that activate them.

Along with his paintings, Weiner also works with sculpture, video, crystal formations, and drawing/watercolors where he combines drugs, alcohol and chemicals that we put into our bodies to create unique, glossy, gradient style pieces.

“I always wanted to be an artist, and I had this scientific/materialist prototype of doing experimentation with the aim of answering big questions. Early on, I was drawn to a bunch of 60’s and 70’s theorists like Clement Greenberg, Barnett Newman, Robert Smithson and Marshall McLuhan who applied materialist concepts to art. For me, it’s an ontological pursuit—an access to existence beyond the anthropocentric.”

I’m interested in the way a microscopic view allows a person an intimate knowledge of the workings of a subject.