Ben Dallas





Ben Dallas paints on delicate wood constructions and assembled materials such as layered canvases. The mysterious design and the three-dimensionality of his works invite the viewer to spend time with the pieces, looking for marks, chromatic shifts, delicate lines, wax layers, and unexpected folds. Dallas’ work can seem hermetic, but a closer look reveals exquisite and poetic compositions.

Dallas received an MA in Art History from the University of Illinois in 1971. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the prestigious Fullbright-Hayes Fellowship. His work has been in exhibitions nationally including the Rockford Art Museum (Rockford, IL), Orange County Center for Contemporary Art (Santa Ana, CA), Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art (Chicago, IL) and the San Francisco Craft and Folk Art Museum (San Francisco, CA).



My intention as a visual artist is to defy conventions and invent new aesthetic relationships by pursuing the untried—respecting its power to bring me and others around to what it offers. The challenges presented by the resulting, autonomous, and perhaps even perplexing visual objects, have the potential to reorient viewers to their own processes of perception and thought. My dimensional art works are neither informative nor symbolic; they’re not about something - they are something. At their best they demand attention, invite contemplation, and direct viewers in some significant way to experience responses beyond the familiar and automatic. My works are intended to hush the hasty understandings and resolutions which identification and recognizable narratives demand and fix.

The aesthetic results I pursue are found within the possibilities offered by the materials and processes I employ. These mostly consist of conventional art supplies, found materials, and wood. I pre-make painted components then look to find preferred combinations of these previously painted surfaces with other materials to construct and hold in place as some physical structure. This process is spontaneous and intuitive encouraging and ensuring quality accidents and surprises leading to the less predictable effects I’m after.

I make serial imagery by producing bodies of works which are each comprised of a shared aspect of visual identity - similarity, not sameness. I continue to produce works in a serial category until  possibilities are exhausted, or some idea for a new visual commonality presents itself. This happens by continual experimentation resulting in a piece exhibiting some notable characteristic worthy for repeating in additional works. I create this way not to laud similarity but to emphasize and demonstrate the reality of difference and uniqueness within a group of similar things, qualities specific to the individual. The serial nature of my works is always secondary to their singularity as objects.” 


Inquire about available artwork here or call 505-372-7681


Something Like How the Other One Looked
, 2024,
acrylic media, MDF, wood, 7 x 4 x 2 in.  



Open-faced Sandwich 1, 2024,
acrylic media, canvas, glue, 5 x 4 x 1 in. 

Open-faced Sandwich 3
, 2024,
acrylic media, canvas, glue, 7 x 5 x 1 in. 


The Wholesome Normality of Corrupt Systems, 2023,
acrylic media, canvas, MDF, 8.5 x 8 x 1 in. 


Pretense to Culture While Shopping Online, 2024,
acrylic media, canvas, glue, 4.25 x 4.25 x 3 in.


No Choice but to Consider the Fastest Bang, 2024,
acrylic media, wood, metal hook, 12 x 7 in.


Too Much Egotistical Fairness, 2024,
 acrylic media, wood, 12 x 10.5 x 1 in.


Inquire about available artwork here or call 505-372-7681