"THESE INTO THAT": Ben Zask, Solo Show
May 9 - 30, 2015
Gallery H of Phantom Galleries Los Angeles
12619 Hawthorne Blvd, Hawthorne, CA
An old clock or a chandelier beyond repair is the type of material that I look for to use in my art. I see the beauty in the way that time has given a sense of character to discarded objects. I disassemble and reuse the parts of these objects to make a sculpture that is completely different from what they were originally. I let the materials guide me to the finished product.
Ben Zask, Solo Show
September 14 - October, 2015
At Doma Kitchen
I have been collecting old picture frames since my days as a picture framer 20 years ago. The wood frames have a beautiful finish that results from the aging process. I have a body of work using these moldings to recreate the look and feelings of the NYC skylines and her skyscrapers that I miss from my upbringing in the metropolis of New York.
"REVIVAL", New Approaches to Found Objects
David Lovejoy and Ben Zask
401 South Mesa St, 3rd Floor
San Pedro, CA 90731
January 17 - February 21, 2015
for more information:
Walk into this room and notice tones of brown gold rusty orange with accented fresh paint. The quiet integrity of the third story gallery weighs in centuries old floors, antique skylights, the cumbersome freight elevator serves as entry point.
The front wall holds a venerable yoke, 10 feet high, vertical center piece for a horse pulled wagon. Two spiraling tendrils of rusted metal flank its massive phallis. Standing in symmetry on either side are two human-sized forms, a circling matrix of linear fragments around a wooden spine, skeleton guards of this alteresque installation. In the middle of the room is a skiff, "Beached", with a tree branch mast. The Centerpiece text encourages viewers to add to this exhibition. An empty beer bottle stands inside the boat a ragged mask hangs down and black and white polaroid photos are scattered about the bottom of the boat. Ben Zask, artist and curator of the show, worked to create a place within the gallery for a unified experience, not just a show of art pieces.
A major piece on the back wall of the gallery by David Lovejoy is "the 10" a revisit to the 10 Commandments. A series of framed vignettes make up the triptich with stenciled phrases such as "behave yourself" illustrated by a photo of a young boy, unmade bed. Another "be nice" with photo of woman gives a dog a bone. Around the perimeter of the gallery are smaller wall pieces made of abstracted elements of all the non functioning well crafted interesting stuff from past centuries.
Far from cubism or deconstruction, these pieces tell a story of our last 100 years in a composition of fragmented objects including pieces of a hand-carved violin, ornamental elements of a chandelier, age worn tools, lenses and casings of defunct movie projector. It will inspire in some viewers a sense of reverence given these objects by the artists. The room, itself a relic, Revival. See what it feels like.
Zask became interested in art in the early 70’s when driving a taxi in NYC, a time when SOHO was being transformed into an art district. He would often park his cab and explore the galleries becoming so infatuated with art that he chose to become a picture framer. For almost 20 years he ran a successful picture framing/art gallery business, making art with cast-off framing materials. He continues to transform unwanted objects into sculpture, using objects he finds in his journeys. Although he left his hometown of Brooklyn a taxi driver, he returns as an artist.
Along with working as a framer, Ben Zask worked as an educator at LAUSD along with his work as an artist. He has shown in galleries across California mainly in the Los Angeles area. He participates often in exhibitions dealing with ecological themes such as “Deep Roots” sponsored by El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument and Million Trees L.A. in the historic Pico House Gallery, USGBC-LA Green Gala Art Exhibit, Avalon, Hollywood, and The Revival Exhibit at The Loft, San Pedro, CA.