A founding member of the
Whores of Babylon Arts Collective, Ben Youdan exhibited in the previous
Liverpool Biennial 2002 and part of the precursor event for the
Liverpool European City of Culture Bid 2008. He has exhibited independently
and collaborated with several international artists and institutions.
His earlier artistic explorations have related to aesthetics, particularly
in the realms of what constitutes beauty, in terms of visualisation
and philosophy. Similar to the moral implications and aesthetic
worth between culture, technology and human intervention. The images
created in my current projects have been one of anatomical glorifications,
a proclivity in contemporary society’s ideologies of aesthetics.
From the psychoanalytical interpretations discerned by the physical
form and generalised through to the self modification perpetuating
the biological and genetic edifice of the body.
He deals with ideas connected with concepts of beauty and the glorification
of the physical human form and its conditions. In particular the
contradictory and opposing notions of natural and artificial beauty,
so prevalent in contemporary media society. As a result of technological
and medical advances many avenues of choice have opened up to people
regarding the personal modification of their own body, giving individuals
an empowering choice never before available to them. Western culture
in particular continues to perpetuate a physical ideal for humanity
slavishly emulated by many individuals on a daily basis. It is important
to realise that the work could equally be seen as a celebration
or indeed a criticism of these choices.
However, the pieces are painstakingly and faithfully hand made
out of a personal reverence for the beauty of the human from. Hopefully
the result is more than just decoration. Part of the work, he intends
to exhibit will consist of a selection he has created over the last
two years from his human organ series. In addition to this, he will
create an entirely new series closely linked to his previous work,
whilst exploring new areas. The new pieces will consist of nine
individual works each depicting enlarged images of human viruses
and bacteria made out of sequins and other mixed media. The work
will be displayed as three triptychs and each individual component
will be two feet square. Through this he is exploring the potential
of the media in which he has chosen to work.
transVoyeur and the Artist
The cosmopolitan and collage like nature of the urban environment
combined with the glamour, fragility and introspection of the human
experience has always been prevalent in my work. Human perfection
and the utopian society are simultaneously optimistic and yet unobtainable
or at least subjective. The link between two geographical places,
Liverpool and New York, could be seen to be symbolic of the connection
between the urban environment and the human experience of it.