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Sunday, 29 March 2015

Speaking in tongues

Art Below's Stations of the Cross exhibition at Marylebone Parish Church may be over but Paul Benney's 'Speaking in Tongues' and ‘St. Jude Thaddeus’ from his 12 Apostle series remain on display through May 2015.

The subjects of 'Speaking in Tongues' are all friends and contemporaries of the artist, and are depicted as the Apostles with Pentecostal flames hovering above them. The reflective surface allows the viewer to appear to be part of the group in an extraordinary and thought-provoking way. Benney's depiction of light emanating from the head as an animation of the spirit has echoes in the imagery of many different religions and is a particular fascination for Benney. 

'Speaking in Tongues' follows on thematically from the major exhibition of Benney's widely publicised show Night Paintings at Somerset House, where he is an artist-in-residence. The work brings together Benney's talents as both a contemporary artist and one of the UK's most celebrated portrait painters.


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