My name is Ben Hotchkiss. I am 75 years old and have been painting abstract paintings for over 40 years. My interest in art germinated in my fathers studio when I was very young. I used to watch him paint. Often, while watching him paint I would thumb thru his bools on earlier painters of the 20th Century. I especially liked those of the Expressionists,Imressionists,Cubists and Abstract Painters. I was expecially intrigued by the color plates of abstract artists. They did not depect anythingwhat did they mean. But I didnt really begin painting for another 20 years when I was down and out in a rooming house in San Francisco. I actually started doing abstract water colors . In 1980 I moved to Northampton, Ma. and discovered an Art Supply store near by. At this point I had an inspiration to switch from water colors to oils. i started on a shoe string with canvas boards, Duro oil paints and small brushes. I am still painting to this day but on masonite now.
I have always been a student of visual expression. I especially like compositions of thingsi.e. many visual en entities working together to create a composite effect. In earlier years I traveled around the country via Grey Hound or Trailways buses and did quick i.e. three rolls of 35mm film photo essays of a city. I have done bunches of pen and inks and colages as well.
Four artists that I greatly regard are Wassely Kandinsky, Vincent Van Gogh, Diebencorn, and Arshile Gorky.
I am intrigued by the intuitive faculties of the Human mind. Like jazz and Classical music Abstract Painting is a purely intuitive form of expression.
I think of myself as a visual explorer,viual innovater and visual alchemist. I have no underlying messages in my paintings. Like Rorschock ink blots each person will have his or her personal response....