Dan’s Papers Cover Artist Ben Fenske Explains His Equine Art

March 8, 2019 Dan's Papers cover art (detail) by Ben Fenske
March 8, 2019 Dan's Papers cover art (detail) by Ben Fenske

Artist Ben Fenske says he painted this week’s cover art “Polo Ponies Grazing” while he was staying in Wellington, Florida. “After a period of studying animal anatomy, I was happy to sketch horses from life. I’ve painted horses in Florida and in France.”

A native of Minnesota, Fenske now works and lives in Sag Harbor and Florence, Italy, and has become recognized as one of the foremost painters on the East End, covering a wide range of subjects, often choosing informal and contemporary scenes with an implied narrative. He works in oil, employing brash and suggestive brushstrokes.

Ben Fenske painting in his studio
Ben Fenske at work on another masterpiece.

Do you keep horses?
For the last few years I have often been around horses, but I never learned to ride. I have spent time sketching, painting and sculpting horses.

This painting suggests a mood of calm remove. Were you feeling this way when you created it?
I’m always happy when I’m outside in the sun painting.

Would you say that your painting style has evolved over the years?
My style has changed over the years as I have become more influenced by Impressionism.

If you could communicate with any artist in history, who would it be?
It would be interesting to see the great horse painter Sir Alfred Munnings at work.

Where can our readers see more of your work?
My paintings can be viewed at the Grenning Gallery in Sag Harbor where I have an annual one-man show. I paint a variety of subjects including landscapes, interiors, portraits and still life. grenninggallery.com

March 8, 2019 Dan's Papers cover art by Ben Fenske
March 8, 2019 Dan’s Papers cover art by Ben Fenske

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