BENKA | Painted with vulgarity
17 November - 22nd December 2022

The winter exhibition at Galerie Dantendorfer in Vienna is dedicated to the Munich-based artist BENKA. The gallery invites you to the opening of the exhibition Painted with vulgarity on November 17th 2022.

With his art, BENKA wants to encourage viewers to question digitization and the use of smartphones and artificial intelligence in our everyday lives. The artist is interested in the complex interaction between human beings and machines and the associated opportunities as well as dangers.

What effects does digitization have on our everyday lives? And in how many areas of our lives do we dependent on machines without realizing it? These questions concern the artist - symbol of the robotization of our society in BENKA's art is the term CAPTCHA, which forms the title of each painting. A captcha is an automated sequence of numbers and/or letters that is intended to check whether the user is a human or a machine. In his works, too, letters and numbers form the basis, which is completed by an intuitive, raw application of paint.

The exhibition title Painted with Vulgarity is intended to focus on the technique and creation of the works. In the tradition of the abstract expressionists of the 1950s, there are no rules in BENKA's painting, it's not about perfection, but much more about emotion and spontaneity. The paint is applied intuitively with brushes, spray cans, hands or spatulas. He wants to create "a human painting, as opposed to a smooth, perfect, clean painting like a machine might paint". This man-made work should also be visible, seemingly vulgar in the application of paint, but elegant in its overall appearance.

New in the exhibition are the small formats, which are fragments of large canvases. They are the remnants of paintings destroyed by the artist: "It's as if I took out the most beautiful thing, like a surgeon" He cuts the essence - "a piece of emotion", as he calls it - from an unsatisfactory work and elevates it into a self-contained work of art.

Text: Selin Stütz