The proposed mural aims to evoke the essence of the earth as a town, and centers around the figure of a young girl, representing the potentiality of human existence. For me the mural is a visual metaphor for an encounter with the “world” in its vivid aliveness. The young girl, sits contemplatively, embodying the wonder of the world and the finite yet boundless character of human existence. Through the interplay of color and form, this mural seeks to bring forth the “Being” of the earth and of the human spirit. This work is not merely a representation of the world, but an invitation to dwell within it, to contemplate the vivid aliveness that pervades all things, and to ponder the mystery of human existence.
This mural is on the North side of the Shiwawassee Bridge on the East side of the river. This mural is near one of our first ArtPath murals.
Benjamin Swallow Duke was born in Louisville, Kentucky, and grew up in Utah. He studied Literature, Philosophy, and Art at the University of Utah receiving his BFA in 2002. He received his Master of Fine Arts at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore Hoffberger School of Painting and has been teaching painting and drawing at Michigan State University since 2006. Duke has had numerous Solo, and Group shows at the national and international level including at the Fitton Art Center in Hamilton, Ohio, “Weak Painting Group,” exhibitions at The Kuandu Museum of Fine Art in Taipei and Da Xiang Art Space in Taichung City, Taiwan, and Several Solo exhibitions at Ann Nathan Gallery in Chicago. Duke’s work is represented by Gallery Victor Armendariz, a well-established and respected downtown Chicago Gallery with a focus on contemporary realism. Duke has also been awarded international residencies at Bamboo Curtain Studios, Taiwan from May to July 2009 and The Kuandu Museum of Fine Art from December 2009 through January 2010 at Taipei National University of the Arts, the premier Art University in Taiwan. A Catalogue entitled: Benjamin Duke 2001-2010: Ten Years of Work with Essays by Brian Kubarycz, a scholar of contemporary literature, and Su YuAnn, an independent curator and critic, was published by Garden City Publishing in June 2010.