In Nomads I depict a group of ladybugs travelling and foraging in all directions; both the figures and the landscape are of indeterminate scale and nature. The bugs engage in a species of relativistic activity that is both still and in movement simultaneously, at the beginning of a journey that may already be over.
Benjamin Klein was born in Chicago and raised in Montreal. He holds a BFA in studio arts from Concordia University (2005) and an MFA from the University of Guelph (2013). In 2010 he was a semi-finalist in the RBC’s national painting competition. Having exhibited in many group shows, both nationally and internationally, he recently had his first solo exhibition, Generator, in Montreal, held jointly at the McClure Gallery and Galerie Joyce Yahouda. His work is represented in private collections in Canada, the US, and the UK.
Klein’s paintings depict a liminal nocturnal world situated on the borderline between garden pastoral and chaotic phantasmagoria. Depopulated of human beings, they are narrative in design, but constructed as parable-like fragments that baffle any definite storyline and resist total reduction to formal or conceptual strategies. In this quasi-abstract fabulist territory, Klein plays the part of experimental dramatist, exploring a wide range of themes and moods, from the traumatic to the ecstatic, from comedy to romance to violence, sorrow, and madness. He depicts mythic creation cycles, at times ironically, but in which nonetheless the origins and ends of things may be at stake, overnight.