Everybody Wears a Crown – Andrea Benge
Amazing Skull Paintings by Andrea Benge
While I was browsing through the internet, I discovered the works of Andrea Benge, a contemporary artist who works with watercolour and coloured pencil. I have noticed quite a lot of skulls within Benge’s work and the colourful illustrations adds a stylised aesthetic that I do find visually interesting.
The style and the subject matter within Benge’s paintings also reminds me of tattoo art; in fact these particular artworks would make amazing tattoo designs! These paintings are very similar to the designs I have seen displayed within the tattoo parlours across the city.
In “Everybody Wears a Crown”, Benge has juxtaposed the skull wearing a multicoloured crown along with colourful paint strokes and paint splatters that adds a very interesting effect to the overall image. In a way Benge has combined beauty with morbidity through the artist’s technique; the paint strokes deliver a vibrant and decorative appearance that contrasts with the grimacing skull within the very centre of the artwork.
In Depth of Grief – Andrea Benge
What fascinates me about this particular artwork is the paint that seeps from the eye sockets; in a way the skull appears to be crying and the paint distorts the original context or symbolic meaning behind the skull.
“The Depth of Grief” is another painting by Benge that features decorative patterns and swirls on the forehead of the skull that is juxtaposed with a blue rose; the designs are very similar to the colourful hand crafted skulls from the Mexican Day of the Dead Celebration. During the festival, celebrants decorate wooden, ceramic and papier mache skulls that establish a reunion between the living and the deceased.
The painting also reminds me of the Momento Mori, a 15th century art style that confronted a person with their own mortality. The skull was often juxtaposed with clocks, hour glasses and other still life objects; in a way Benge’s work is a contemporary version of the Momento Mori!
These two particular artworks are my favourite from Benge’s collection, they’re bight, they’re colourful and they have skulls, what more could you ask for!
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