60: Benjamin Phillips

Categories: 100 Creatives

When we last put the spotlight on 100 creative forces in Phoenix, it was no secret there were more than 100 individuals who were making waves in the local arts community. So as we count down to our annual Best of Phoenix issue, we're profiling 100 more. Welcome (back) to 100 Creatives

benjamin phillips main.jpg
Benjamin Phillips
See also: Benjamin Phillips' Reflection Pool at eye lounge

Benjamin Phillips is a sculptor who makes art that refers to conditions of mortality and vulnerability in the human body. Phillips was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia and educated in Canada and the United States.

Before studying art, his first degree was in Comparative Religion where he says he established a curiosity for understanding the people around him and universal truths that narrate our common experiences.

"This training prepared a foundation for my comparative approach to studying the human body for his artistic practice, layering literary metaphors into contemporary form and subject matter," he says.

Benjamin Phillips
Autumn (Forton, steel, lead, pigments)
I came to Phoenix with . . . my wife in the summer of 2008 from Vancouver, British Columbia. We got married a month before with an urge to start a new chapter in our lives in a new country with new opportunities and better weather.

I make art because . . . it is a way for me to communicate things I can't with words.

Benjamin Phillips
External Defenses (Forton, wood, steel, taxidermy eyes, pigments)
I'm most productive when . . . I have three unresolved projects on the go and at least one of them is due relatively soon. A small amount of panic is a good stimulator for my brain.

My inspiration wall is full of . . . body parts (molds and casted ones, that is) as well all kinds of pictures of bodies in motion and poised.

I've learned the most from . . . problems that I don't know how to resolve. I approach these situations more clearly because I don't know how they will end, so I'm discovering as I go and my senses are more acutely aware at every stage of the process. In response to this, I tend to work organically to allow for this to happen.

Good work should always . . . stop you and make you reconsider something in a totally new light.

The Phoenix creative scene could use more . . . money, initiative and awareness... from patrons and the city and state; art gets swept under the rug unless there's a controversy at an auction house, and that's not right.

Benjamin Phillips
Stephen (Forton, steel, bondo, pigments)

More people need to go and see art and make a personal connection with art so they can appreciate the function of art; it isn't just for decoration or for people who use funny words and wear funny glasses. Art can teach you about yourself and the world around you. Art is good for everyone, even when you don't understand it, which is difficult for a lot of people because art doesn't hold a prominent role in North American culture.

Benjamin Phillips
Ancestor Series, no. 4 (bronze)
The Creatives, so far ... (And while you're here, check out 100 Tastemakers on Chow Bella.)

100:Lara Plecas
99. Isaac Caruso
98. Brandon Gore
97. Kelsey Dake
96. Hector Ruiz
95. Caroline Battle
94: Jennifer Campbell
93. Jeff Chabot
92. Tiffiney Yazzie
91. Daniel Germani
90. Irma Sanchez
89. Daniel m. Davis
88. Kirstin Van Cleef
87. Emmett Potter
86. Sarah Hurwitz
85. Christine Cassano
84. Fred Tieken
83. Lindsay Kinkade
82. Ruben Galicia
81. Robert Uribe
80. Heidi Abrahamson
79. Josephine Davis
78. Travis Ladue
77. Taz Loomans
76. Mikey Jackson
75. Alex Empty
74. Joe Ray
73. Carol Roque
72. Daniel Funkhouser
71. Carla Chavarria
70. Hugo Medina
69. Cavin Costello
68. Claire Carter
67. Lindsay Tingstrom
66. Catherine Ruane
65. Christopher Crosby
64. Aaron Johnson
63. Brenda Eden
62. <a href="http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/jackalope/2012/07/colton_brock_phoenix_art_creatives.php" target="_blank">Colton Brock
61. Ernesto Moncada

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