Works from Studio 709 in Sullivan, IL
Paintings by M. Ben Cohan can be seen at Gallery 709
at the Factory Art Studios: 321 S. Hamilton St. Sullivan, IL. Contact me
if you wish to set up a visit to the studio or gallery. A painting is an unending pause.
Abraham Lincoln, ever the self-deprecator and insightful humorist, once remarked on a trip from his current home in Springfield, Illinois to his previous home in Indiana,
that part of the country is, within itself, as unpoetical as any spot on the earth. Seeing it and its objects and inhabitants aroused feelings in me which were certainly poetry; though whether my expression of those feelings is poetry is quite another question.
This statement speaks to the secret power of quiet places.
I feel a necessity for painting a brand of scenery that is constantly seen but rarely lovingly gazed upon. The errand route and crosswalk serve us, but do not delight us as imagery--I am painting the sidewalks: the stages for our conversations. I am painting the meadows: the distances between us. Being landlocked and lacking the seaside, I am painting the drive to work. Rather than the mountain lake, I am painting the backyard. Bereft of deserts, I am painting a parking space.
In these and other scenes, I find that I am painting the worn paths of Home. It is this affectionately banal subject matter that keeps me looking and working. Accordingly, painting serves my efforts to transform my Midwestern Home into scenes worthy of the word poetic.