In a 64-monitor, 3-channel video installation titled God Bless America, Paul Stephen Benjamin constructs a contemplative space in which ideas about race and patriotism commune and collide. Configured in a U-shape, the flickering red, white and blue images bring to mind a cathedral apse or chapel, and its electronic presentations of Aretha Franklin and Lil Wayne provide a new, American homily.
Benjamin addresses the manifold expressions of black identity in video installation, paintings, drawings, sculpture, and mixed media works. In formally beautiful works, Benjamin invites the view to consider the impossibility of any singular expression of blackness while drawing on historical cultural representations.
Benjamin was the recipient of an
Artadia award in 2014. Feb-April 2016 Benjamin exhibited his solo exhibition Come Over at The Mayors Office of Cultural Affairs Gallery 72 in downtown Atlanta, GA. His work has been on exhibit at the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center in the Exquisite Corpse and the Coloring exhibitions. He was also featured in the group exhibition Emerging Artist Award Winners 15th Year Retrospective Exhibition at The Swan Coach House. Among his awards to date are the Winnie B. Chandler Fellowship, Diasporal Rhythms Artists Recognition Award, The Hambidge Center for Creative Arts & Sciences Fellowship, The Atlanta Contemporary Art Center Studio Program and the Forward Arts Emerging Artists Award. Congratulations to Poem 88 artist Paul Stephen Benjamin, recent recipient of a Working Artist Project Fellowship (2017) at The Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia - MOCA GA