Benjamin Rankin

Artist Statement

I am concerned with the various qualities of ambiguity that result from a mixture of intuitive and calculated operations during the development of a painting. Often a photographic image serves as a starting point. During the translation of the image into a painted surface, I am confronted with my own question as to what the painting is about. The initial process of selecting an image is now vulnerable to subversion by the painting process. Evidence remains of a struggle between the pictorial and linguistic functions within the work creating the possibility for ambiguous interpretation. My practice of painting reflects a certain level of doubt as to the possibility of maintaining a continuous intention from the decision of what to paint to the resolution of a painted image. Currently I am reproducing source material using printmaking processes to explore the possibilities of painting when a defined image is already present on the canvas. Ultimately I am interested in the possibility of specificity and indeterminacy in works viewed as paintings, including the effects of context, captioning and subtext.


Benjamin Rankin is a Painter from Montreal, Canada.

Although painting has been his primary creative discipline for many years, the influence of his previous education and experience as an Architect is sometimes evident in his treatment of, and attitude towards, the subject matter in his work.

He has exhibited in solo and group shows in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Montreal and Washington, D.C. His works are held in private collections in Scotland, England, Canada, the United States and New Zealand.


  • Smith
  • Studio One
  • Calder 01
  • The Upsetter
  • This or That
  • Untitled