Los Angeles

Benton Scott

Gallerie de Ville

It does not follow that an artist who refuses to participate in the frantic race from one innovation to another, a practice generally applauded by critics and buyers today, is necessarily in a rut. The prospects for exploration by artists dedicated to a more confined philosophy are equally promising though perhaps not as exhilarating for either the artist or his following. Satisfaction there must be, though, for many fine artists who by comparison demonstrate a very limited horizon but continue to survive and appear to suffer no serious debility as a result.

Benton Scott is one of these artists and the exhibition at the Gallerie de Ville seems to suggest that others could do worse than to pause long enough to explore their immediate vicinity with the same careful interest evidenced in these luscious canvases. It is not enough to say that Scott is an admirable colorist, setting sparkling primaries against frameworks of grey. More than that, he confesses a love of the rural French lands and large gatherings of brilliant blossoms, so passionate that one is slightly embarrassed by his pictorially florid vocabulary. The rich wet surfaces depicting the chateaux and villages beloved by Vlaminck and Utrillo, far surpass reality through judicious simplification of form. Scott has spent a lifetime probing the confines of his provincial microcosm with a mother’s tender consideration and as a result has considerably brightened the corner where he is.

Curt Opliger