31 August 2010

Ben Cuevas

1. Where and how would you display your work in an ideal situation?
Ideally? At the Whitney or the Venice Biennale! I jest (sort of). I have a tendency to dream big, which is why I seek out out venues that afford artists ample space and an eager audience. As an emerging artist, having just graduated from Hampshire College this past May, I've been very lucky to exhibit at two art festivals (The Wassaic Project in NY and Smokefarm in WA), as well as in a solo show at Canal Gallery in Holyoke, MA. Canal Gallery was an ideal space for me in many ways. It is an enormous industrial warehouse with two floors of exhibition space, including a 40'x40' white box room. In general, I find the white box to be a very appealing place in which to install work for its endless possibilities and conceptual neutrality, as well as for allowing the focus to be entirely on the installation. However, I also enjoy the challenge that alternative spaces provide. Working within the architecture of any given space, or the varied terrain of the outdoors, can further enrich the concept in ways no white box can.

2. If expository writing is good at elucidating and proving a point and
descriptive geometry gives us the tools by which to map objects in space
in relation to one another, what kind of an apparatus does art afford us?
What does art do best?
Art expands consciousness. It transforms the mundane into the profound, challenges ingrained thought processes, and transcends preconceived notions. Art is the impetus for growth.

3. What can you expect from your audience/fans/viewing public? What would you
like them to know about your work?
All I expect from my audience is an open mind. While craftsmanship is an integral part of my practice, I'd like to remind the viewer that much lies beneath the surface of the material.

4. Marcel Duchamp said - "Enough with retinal art!" What is your reaction as an artist to this statement?
Duchamp is right on. Art should be more than something to look at. It should incite change. 

5. Do you think that there is still room for art movements in today's
pluralistic climate?
I think art movements are happening all the time, but the nature of them is constantly evolving. In a rapidly globalizing culture and an economy where emphasis increasingly is placed on the "niche market," art movements will be as pluralistic and varied as the infinite niches that exist within the human psyche.

6. What is one question you wished we had asked you about your art? Please
feel free to answer it.
Do you have gallery representation? Not yet, but that's a major goal of mine. If someone would like to contact me about representing my work, they can email me at bencuevas@gmail.com

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