Kevin Benham Reflecting on his Villa Lena Residency
The Tuscan countryside is defined by the sky, but more specifically by the sun. During clear skies, the sun casts a sharp shadow that defines interior and exterior spaces and during overcast days, the melancholy is enhanced by the soft shadows and atmosphere of the surrounding hills.
Villa Lena is perfectly situated at the nexus of these varying conditions and space is modulated by the earth continuously moving around the sun. As a result, the light is continuously moving throughout space and creates a dynamic experience that enhances the phenomenological and corporeal.
While in residence I began a project, Where the Light Falls, that empirically marked and recorded the movement of light through various apertures. The resulting drawings are minimal in nature, but profoundly grounded in a larger idea of gravity, temporality, and the constant relationship between the earth and sun.
In addition to those temporal installations, Kevin Benham has also proposed a permanent installation for Villa Lena. Cielo is a proposed installation that embodies the philosophical relationship of the sky and the earth in Tuscany. The proposed work will consist of a large mirror, abstractly placed within the landscape as a minimal gesture that will reflect the sky and create a phenomenological relationship between the earth and the atmosphere above.
The collection of images below represents that series and records the phenomenology of the light through the day, taken both in the villa and his studio: