Steve Bendykowski began drawing as soon as he could hold a pencil and has pursued his passion for art and artmaking all of his life. He has taught college and exhibited his works in many galleries. Steve is now a full-time artist who has made a deliberate choice to live and paint in obscurity. Without pressure to sell or exhibit, he is free to paint according to his own vision and convictions; you can find his works at bendykowski.art. In his own words: "It is such a blessing to be able to use the gifts my creator gave me and become the artist I always wanted to be." ~ Rob Hill.
In the tradition of Hieronymus Bosch, Bendykowski’s meticulously crafted paintings and drawings have been called “a painted satire on the sins and ravings of mankind”. His style has often been linked to the Magic Realism and New Objectivity movements. Often using paranormal, abandoned and decaying subject matter set against a stormy sky, his work is a spiritual allegory where everyone will see something different.
* Allegory: visual representation which can be interpreted to represent a hidden meaning with moral or political significance.
Question: Are you still a college professor or teach at the Bemis Center for Contemporary Art in Omaha, Nebraska (USA)?
Answer: I no longer teach college or at the Bemis. However I do love teaching and hold workshops near South Padre Island in Texas every winter. I will also work with groups when it makes sense for both of us.
Question: Don’t I know you as “Steve Bendy”?
Answer: Bendy is the shortened version of my birth name, Bendykowski. So If you are looking for the guy that was an Apple Systems Engineer or a college teacher that would be me. Decades ago I was also involved in a couple of business ventures (Hotentot Heating & Air Conditioning, WC Frank of Arizona, and commercial real estate leasing) so you may also know me from there. Shoot me an e-mail, I would love to hear from you.
Question: Where are you located?
Answer: My "home" studio is in central Iowa, but I am somewhat of a nomad traveling in my RV. I am often somewhere in the rocky mountains or near Padre Island, Texas in the winter.
Question: Why is your artwork so dark and depressing?
Answer: My artwork is a depiction of the evil and folly of the society I live in. How else do you depict a society that calls good evil and evil good? It is a warning to those who reject the salvation of the absolute truth of a holy creator. Hopefully it will get you to think about eternity and the judgement that awaits evil.
Question: Who are your favorite artists?
Answer: My favorite artists are Hieronymus Bosch, Caspar David Friedrich, and Edvard Munch. I like the mood of many Edward Hopper's paintings and the technique of John Singer Sargent.
Question: Are you a christian?
Answer: Yes, and by that I don't mean religion, but that I base my salvation on faith in Jesus. It was quite a shock to those that knew me when they saw the change in my life. If you are interested in reading an interesting story about my conversion read about it on my blog.