Art Galleries

Flatlanders Art Galleries proudly presents A Family Affair, an exhibition that consists of the members of the Van Benschoten family . This exhibit is free of charge and will be open to the public from October 3rd to January 16th, 2016. A  reception with the artists is planned for Saturday, October 17th from 4:00 to 6:00 pm and will include refreshments.


Bryan Van Benschoten - "My pottery is based on form, function and proportion while maintaining aesthetic appeal. The challenge is to synthesize these concepts and find creative solutions for each. Functionality is the singular driving force in my work. While functionality is my primary concern, my wares must capture the interest of the viewer through innovative form. I consider form to be a close relative to function. Form will push function in some instances to its extreme, especially when proportion takes precedent in making the wares that will challenge the concept of functional ceramics. The farther out on this limb one ventures, and pushing the ceramic piece to become nonfunctional the greater the possibility for the work to become aesthetically appealing.Herein lays the premise: I am a functional potter that produces wares rooted in functionality with aspirations to push the boundaries of form in the name of aesthetic innovation. As I proceed forward in ceramics, more time is devoted pushing the limits toward aesthetics and the nonfunctional."

Shirley Van Benschoten – "I take a journey with each new painting, always wondering what I will see around the bend in the road, or down a new pathway. Painting intuitively, I am attempting through art to respond to the enchanting rhythms of waves, winds, sand, and light. Lake Michigan coastlines, orchards and vineyards, beaches throughout Michigan inspire me. My goal is to express the essence of a landscape with a celebration of movement and fluidity.”

Elijah Van Benschoten– "For the general public, I think art is a lot like vegetables. Everybody knows that you're supposed to have it in your diet, but so few people actually do or even know why. We'll sometimes eat a loaded baked potato like Thomas Kinkade and feel good about making an effort, but that usually ends up doing more harm than good. With my work, I lure you in with a chocolate chip cookie title, and then I throw some broccoli at you. Everybody needs a hook, right? Digital media has figured it out with click bait, so I decided to take a page out of their book by using recent titles inspired by Buzzfeedesque headlines with a little Dada influence. Some of my recent works incorporate a mix of pop culture and paying homage to the greats of art history, such as a meme face in place of the lone figure in Caspar David Friedrich’s Monk by the Sea.

The visual side of my work is still very much rooted in a lot of traditional leanings toward a love of paint and materials. Landscapes are a source of great inspiration for me as they have the potential for so much symbolism. I’ve also dedicated myself to a daily art practice since August 12, 2008. The first thousand days were spent producing at least one drawing a day, then a thousand more of color study, and now I’m on to the human figure.  I’ve reached a point in my life where I choose to make art that, above all, pleases me and maybe also makes me laugh. This feels a lot more meaningful than anything else I could be doing right now."