A teacher once told a GCSE student that they would never sell a piece of art in their life, a college lecturer once told the same student that art is not art if you work from a photograph; that student was Ben Riley.
World renowned, with his pieces featuring in media, television and press-worldwide, Ben Riley is bringing art to a whole new level. Riley uses broken pieces of vinyl, vinyl dust and glue to create stunning pieces of musicians, famous faces and other iconic images. There is no pen and no paint involved and the pieces are totally brought to life with the 3D fragments of snapped vinyl records.
Riley’s work is displayed permanently in the Vinyl Groove Café in Lytham and is a great extra to the music themed café that is dedicated to the lovers of food and music.
On Thursday the 1st of December I had the privilege of attending one of Ben’s live demo nights at the Vinyl Groove Café where Riley did a demonstration on how the pieces are created, along with a Q and A, and many great stories about his life as an artist.
Watching Riley, a clear passion is shown through everything he says and does; the care and concentration that he has when working on a piece, even in a demo situation, is mesmerising and it is extremely interesting to see how his masterpieces are put together.
Riley spoke about the struggles he faced in both school art and in the art community after school and it was inspiring to hear about how his love of creating brought Riley to this completely original technique and use of materials.
The unusual way his pieces of art are brought to life has captured many people eyes; Riley spoke about how it was often difficult convincing people that his work is made through vinyl alone and that how by using demos it becomes a lot more effective as a way of showing people the artistic process.
I had the honour of being able to speak to Ben after the demo and it became very obvious to me that this was someone who had the greatest love for art, who adored his work and was clearly so inspired every day.
Riley said “I like doing demonstrations at my shows so that people can get more up close and personal to the work, giving the viewers more of a connection to the work and experience the evolution of how they are created. The Vinyl Groove Café is a great venue for my work as it is all about records, just like my creations”
If you would like to see some of Ben’s work you can follow him on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook all @BenRileyArt or you can visit his website at www.benrileyart.com
You can also visit the Vinyl Groove Café @VinylGrooveCafe for Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.