Ben Quesnel deconstructs and distorts familiar objects often gathered from tag sales, neighborhood auctions, and community recycling centers. His decontextualized forms challenge viewers to apprehend the meanings that have been attached to these objects and to evaluate them with a new understanding. Through his acts of deconstructing, he exposes the inner attachments that one develops with the objects, as they are simultaneously detached from their primary function. Swaying between a definable object and an unreachable thing, Quesnel’s pieces hover between the nameable and unnameable, inviting the viewer to acknowledge that the things with which we surround ourselves will never fully be comprehended.
Quesnel is a multimedia artist and art curator working in Stamford, Connecticut. His latest works were exhibited at Satellite Art Fair in Miami, Governors Island Art Fair in New York, and the Hollows in Brooklyn. In 2018, he was unanimously selected for a one year residency program with the Clementina Arts Foundation for his social practice project, Undelivered. In 2019, the CAF granted him a seat on the board. He has performed public and private installations throughout the tri-state area, and is the co-founder of Sour Milk, a curatorial art project utilizing the latent potential of vacant spaces. Quesnel is a graduate of the MFA program at the School of Visual Arts in NYC where he received the Paula Rhodes Memorial Award for outstanding art practice and the School of Visual Art’s Thesis Grant. His work has been in a variety of publications including Bmore Art, Gothamist, Hampton’s Art Hub, Hyperallergic, and the New York Times.
Ben Quesnel is currently curating a show at the Greenwich Arts Council's Bendheim Gallery titled PUT ON YOUR FACE AND HAND ME DOWN, which is opening Thursday, October 24th continuing through Tuesday, November 21st, 2019
PUT on YOUR FACE and HAND ME DOWN is a group exhibition that explores the psychological relationships that we develop with the things that we wear as well as the general associations that are attached to different articles of clothing and fabrics to re-create reminiscence of the past. Like an overflowing closet, the space is filled with pieces that contain a variety of interpretations; clothing reduced down to its materiality to garments that contain a sentimental value equivalent to heirlooms. Exhibiting artists use photography, sculpture, installation, painting, video, and projection to explore these different connections.
Neil Daigle-Orians latest series, "heart on my sleeve," utilizes his old clothing to convey his fascination with tensions that exist between binary structures, gender, personal, private and digital space. Rose Nestler’s soft sculptures use associative psychological connotations of abstracted clothing to examine issues of power, attraction and gender. Expanding upon the clothing theme, Aaron Johnson mimics brush strokes with his selected medium of socks, elevating this humble item to a crafted artifact, simultaneously absurd and beautiful. Rebecca Ness is interested in how bodies interact creating new pattern and spatial form. Juliana Stankiewicz’s Mannequin series is an exploration of societal values placed on women and contemporary disguises, with Andy Warhol’s silkscreens offering a layered commentary on feminine beauty.
Zeren Badar, Michael Chang, Neil Daigle Orians, Sonia Delaunay, Alexandra Grau, Jeila Gueramian, Aaron Johnson, Trevon Latin, Motomichi Nakamura, Rebecca Ness, Rose Nestler, Juliana Stankiewicz and Andy Warhol.