Benjamin Brode

~Fine Art~

Santa Barbara News Press

Review of RANCHO SAN JULIAN — A YEAR IN PAINT

More than just a random group of paintings, "A Year in Paint" comes together in macro and micro ways. Images of singular scenes on this property are diverse and continuous enough to add up to a grand visual essay on the sense of the lay of this particular land. To an appropriately lesser degree, he makes passing acknowledge of the ranch's modest structures. As a whole, the set of paintings is filtered and given focus through one artist's vision and semi-impressionistic style.
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Santa Barbara Independent

Review of Poetry in Paint :

"Ben Brode’s seascapes convey a waterman’s sensibility. With their careful attention to the interactions of light and water, they read like the observations of a fisherman looking out to sea to predict the next day’s weather. Brode captures in paint that fleeting moment at sunset when the sky and sea cannot be ignored as they take over the horizon with a dynamic performance in color. High-gloss varnish and smooth surface textures reflect a surfer’s aesthetic, giving his oil paintings the bright gloss of a surfboard. In 'Low Tide,' 'Evening Color,' and 'Lavender Sea,' Brode addresses the paradox of the ocean sunset -- that place where fire and water meet, light and color are mirrored, and time is momentarily suspended."

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Sketches
of
A Caribbean Adventure


In the winter of 2008, Benjamin Brode took his search for artistic inspiration to the Caribbean. Along with sailing buddy, New Mexico artist Michael Broome, Brode chartered a boat and sailed the Windward and Leeward Islands for six weeks. Picking up their boat at Barefoot Yachts in the Blue Lagoon near Kingston, St. Vincent Island, the artist/sailors began a journey that included 25 foot seas and challenging squalls as well as idyllic bays and sleepy fishing villages.

One of the first anchorages after departing St. Vincent was off Soufriere, the old town at the base of the Pitons on St. Lucia. Here Broome and Brode sketched amongst the fishermen on their incredibly beautiful beach.


Sailing from St. Lucia to Martinique, they anchored for a couple of days off the charming town of St. Pierre with its still-active volcano, Mt. Pelee. From Martinique, Brode and Broome sailed to the “Nature Island” of Dominica. Here they spent nearly a week in the harbor of Portsmouth and Prince Rupert Bay. This was a perfect spot to explore the inland rain forest and marine sanctuaries.

As the adventure continued on to Guadaloupe and The Saintes, the sailors were not disappointed in their quest for the perfect little bay with quiet, unspoiled beaches.

They also found those quaint little villages and a glimpse of ageless island life. Most days were spent sailing, exploring land, provisioning, repairing the boat, and soaking in the textures and temperaments of these beautiful islands. Sunsets and sunrises were moments of reverence and reliably spectacular.

And, at the end of the journey, Brode traveled home to record his memories in sketches and paintings. Over the past few months, his open air studio has had a decisively Caribe aire as he worked on the tropical series inspire by this journey.


In November, 2008, the "Caribe Adventure" paintings were featured in the show: "Ann James Celebrates Ben Brode". Images of these and other Benjamin Brode paintings can be seen on this site in the Available Works section.



"seeking the spiritual in nature, extracting the essence, putting it on canvas"