View of Cape Town from Nelson Mandela Boulevard and Still Life

Benjamin Coutouvidis

Medium:

Oil on Cardboard, 2020

Dimensions:

66cm x 56cm

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ABOUT BENJAMIN COUTOUVIDIS

In 1993, Ben Coutouvidis graduated from Rhodes University with a distinction and has exhibited at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, as well as group shows throughout Cape Town and Johannesburg. Well known for his atmospheric distilling paintings depicting the everyday and mundane; he recently began exploring sculp- tural mediums such as wood and metal. Here, we see the range of the artist as these sculptural forms work within the similar concepts but exist in a blunt presence and focus more on the human body.

“That we live inside landscapes and landscapes live inside of us describes something essential about our existence. My development as a painter is about becoming conscious of this process.

Inside my studio, next to my palette is a stone that was given to me by the poet Don Maclennan. Don loved adventure in South African landscape and found this stone on one of his trips to the Orange river. This smooth river stone is jasper with a seam of tiger’s eye and when held to the light at a certain angle glints like gold. Don carefully chose this stone for me knowing I wanted to become a painter. The stone is a talisman that suggests that seeing, painting and landscape could be the ingredients for some sort of alchemical process.

As a landscape painter the challenge is to bring the experience of having been out there in the landscape in here to the studio in order to work with it. I find that I am using two registers in my paintings now. The top register tends to be the landscape as it is seen, it’s appearance and the bottom register are those things that have been brought in from out there, like smooth river stones for example. This sets up an interaction between the two tiers and invites the viewer to link them using their own experience. I hope you enjoy looking at them as much as I did in making them.”

SOLO EXHIBITIONS

2019     “Time and Again”, Prince Albert Gallery, Prince Albert, South Africa

2018     “Limb” Eclectica Contemporary, Cape Town, South Africa

2017     “Grounds” Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2015     “The Crossing”  a multi media installation at the Everard Read Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2014     “Seeing Things” Knysna Fine Art

2010     “Play”  solo exhibition to coincide with South Africa hosting the Football World Cup. Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town South Africa

2007     “Encounters” , Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2005     “Kalk Bay to Karibib” , Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2004     “Great Karoo”, Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

1996     Masters submission exhibition with Hermann Niebuhr, Grahamstown, South Africa

GROUP EXHIBITIONS

2017     “Dream Rift” and “Symbiosis” two group shows at Eclectica Design and Art, Cape Town, South Africa.

2015     East/West exhibition with Lisa Strachan at the Everard Read Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2015     Residency at the Forge, Kalk bay

2015     “Spectra”  a curated exhibition at Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2014     “Big Sky”  African landscapes, curated show Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2014     “From the Heart” group show curated by Carol Hodes at the Christopher Moller Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2014     “Still”  curated exhibition, Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa.

2014     Art on Paper, group show Kalk Bay Modern Gallery.

2013     “Muse”  group show at the Casa Labia Gallery, Muizenberg

2013     “Allusions of Abstraction”  curated exhibition at Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2012     Sculpture and ceramics group show at Kalk Bay Modern, Cape Town, South Africa

2012     “Still Life” group show at Kalk Bay Modern, Cape Town, South Africa with Hanneke Benade and Walter Meyer.

2012     “-Scape”  group exhibition at Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2009     “Art that Inspires” Anniversary exhibition at Johans Borman Fine Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa.

2001-3   Various group exhibitions with Carol Lee Fine Art, Johannesburg, South Africa

2001     “Karoo” two person show with Hermann Niebuhr, Albertyn Stables Art Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

1997     Two person show with Hermann Niebuhr, ABSA Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa

1993     The Savage Garden with Jan Nell, Leanette Botha and  Alex Murphy,   Grahamstown National Arts Festival, South Africa

COLLECTIONS

Spier
ABSA Bank
Rhodes University Collection
Collection of the Institute of English Education in SA, Rhodes University
Barclays International
General Cologne
Webber Wentzel Bowens
Gerling Insurance