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Ben Tankard
Ben Tankard

Blue Mountains, Australia

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Artwork Description

Acrylic Paint on canvas, stretched and ready to hang

Signed on the back

This is an abstract painting, based on the classic 'Popular Penguin' paperback books, a style icon. I wanted to take the original format of the book cover and transform it, distorting it with thick brushstrokes, and distorting the text, retaining the essence of the original inspiration but also becoming something new.

The paintings in this series were created over many sessions. The surface that you see has been built up in several layers, leaving marks and splashes visible. The surface is impasto and textural, with many spatters and signs of overpainting and reworking. Please note that the edges of the canvas are painted, and it is ready to hang without framing. Note also, it can be hung vertically, like a stack of books, or horizontally, like books on a shelf.

In this particular painting, the various designs of the book spines are all based on actual, historical Penguin formats, from the 1930s to today.

Former director of the Art Gallery of NSW, Edmund Capon, said of the first painting in this series, " an evocative imagining of the familiar Penguin was a painting we all liked very much for its rich texture, its sense of memory and its sort of nostalgic humour"

In terms of the application of the paint, I would cite the work of Jasper Johns, Robert Motherwell and Franz Kline as inspirations. The text owes something to the work of Rosalie Gascoigne.

These striking paintings will look great in any home.


acrylic on canvas

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Stretched and ready to hang

This artwork is stretched and ready to hang.

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