Benjamin Levy, Israeli/American (1940 - )

 Benjamin Levy was born in Tel Aviv in 1940. He studied art in Israel under Abraham Yaskil, in Paris at the École de Montparnasse and in New York at the Pratt Graphic Art Center. After his studies he returned to Tel Aviv, where he set up a studio and later got married.

Levy has drawn a great deal of inspiration from his collection of family photos, many of which were taken before he was born. His paintings have absorbed a lot of the magic of these old photos, which is reflected in the distinct rigidity of his figures, the dream-like quality of his paintings and the theatrical setting of most of his portraits and scenes. Figures in full dress are arranged as if for a photograph, and the stage is fitted out with a curtain and scenes. 

It is communication by means of gestures, views and symbols. Unexpressed messages are sometimes delivered by a small winged messenger, perhaps the inner voice of one's conscience or temptation. A little bird rests on some straw, a symbol of the human soul.

In 1965 the Levy family moved to New York, where he soon achieved success and recognition. He now lives in New York, Tel Aviv and in the Ein Hod artistic colony in Israel.

Since the late 1960s he has held over 80 one-man shows and has taken part in over 100 group shows in Israel, the United States and Europe. His work is included in many private and public collections throughout the world.



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