Name: Ben Buswell
City: Portland, OR
Birthplace: Dallas, OR
Your present state of mind: Fixed but searching.
Your favorite qualities in a person: A humanized sense of objectivity and generosity. I like people who are aware of other people.
Your chief characteristic: The ability to synthesize information...whether I am correct or not is a different question.
Your idea of happiness: Feeling comfortable in the wash.
Your idea of misery: Dealing with people who desire power.
Your favorite food and drink: Pork belly and collards and aromatic bitters and Asian soups...not necessarily eaten together.
Your favorite qualities in an artwork: Intuitive intentionality. The fluid place where material presence and content are mated.
Your heroes in art: Irwin, Deacon and Lohmann.
What did you hope to find when you moved to Portland? Did you find it? I hoped to find a community and place for my work. And, I hoped to support my family in a job related to art. At this point, yes, I have found those things.
How have you built your artistic practice? I have tried to build my practice through the work. I make work and learn from it. I am always trying to evolve the question I am asking. I gauge my practice in relation to my own sense of discovery. I have tried to make myself available in the community, but let the work do the talking. In that sense, I was lucky to have worked with people, like TILT: Export, who believe in the work enough to trust artists with great opportunities. And, I always say yes.
What art and artists should we be watching? All of them. Go to galleries/museums/pop-ups/fairs/non-profits/schools and look at all of them. And, then decide.
What's next for you? This summer I will be headed back to Anderson Ranch to teach a workshop and then back into the studio. I see my work making a turn back toward fully dimensional sculpture. I am going to be doing some material testing, with the hope of creating some human scale floor based works.