315 Peck Street, Building 3, New Haven, CT 06513         203 777 7760

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JOHN BENICEWICZ

My paintings explore universal and deeply personal themes simultaneously. They are about the struggles between life and death, oppression and resistance, and the short distance between lust and fear. In creating these works, I was interested in the merging and clashing of many different things, including emotional aspects, subject matter, and formal issues. My purpose was to create a unity–a oneness–out of the struggle, by pulling the elements together to make something new. To this end, some shapes/forms in the works have multiple meanings. These paintings are somber and humorous, sensual and grotesque; they are representational and abstract, personal and sublime. In each of the paintings there are recurring themes relating to queer sexuality, my memories of childhood, and the joys and anxieties I’m experiencing in adulthood. And there is always a sense of transition and change occurring within them. I’ve also continued within many of the works a sub-theme relating to the life cycle of bees, which stems from my childhood obsession with them. In these works I explore the mating flight, where male bees–called drones–eventually fall out of the sky, dying, having mated with the queen. I see many dark parallels between this experience and the human experience of sex and sexuality. Desire and death have always kept uncomfortably close quarters and that awareness has informed my work for years.

Education

1994-5 School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA

1993-4 Parsons Schoool of Design, New York, NY

 

Solo and Two-Person Exhibitions

2016 John Benicewicz & Robert Taplin, Fred Giampietro Gallery, New Haven, CT

1993 The New Circus, Arts Council of Greater New Haven, New Haven, CT (solo)

1992 Washington Art Association, Washington, CT Southbury Public Library Gallery, Southbury, CT (solo)

 

Selected Group Exhibitions

2015 Holiday Exhibition, Fred Giampietro Gallery, New Haven, CT

2013 Recent Aquisitions, Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, New York, NY

2012 LIC Arts Open Studio, Queens, NY 2009 Long Island City Artists Open Studio, Queens, NY

1998 Interstate I95, The John Slade Ely House, New Haven, CT

1997 WCAC Gallery, Danbury, CT

 

Collections

The Leslie-Lohman Musuem of Gay and Lesbian Art, New York, NY

Private Collections in the United States

 

Selected Bibliography

2016 Gorky's granddaughter (www.gorkysgranddaughter.com) artists documentary series, video interview, June 2016

2013 Snellen, Wayne, “News on the Leslie-Lohman Collections,” The Archive: The Journal of the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, Issue No. 46, Summer 2013, p. 20. 1993

Coleman, Mimsie, June review, New Haven Arts, summer 1993, Vol. 6, No. 1., p. 2 1992

Freed, Gwendolyn, “The Arts’ Open Door,” The New Haven Advocate, Sept. 3, 1992, pp. 21-24