My recent work is fueled by a year in Rome and travels in Europe that reunited me with my childhood passions. I remember lying in bed as a child, unable to sleep after having been to the Natural History Museum or watching the Living Planet and recreating my own version of what I had seen. I would put all the pieces together and explore what else could have, and should have been there.
My influences range from Persian miniatures to Dutch still lifes; terrariums and model train sets to aquariums and bonsai trees; things that are generally considered private and personal obsessions. I am always searching for contained and controlled beauty, the kind found suspended in the artificial and spectacular worlds of theme parks, old science books, history museum pamphlets, and field guides. I try to mutate or regenerate these kaleidoscopic introversions in hopes of painting a self-sustaining and boundless world.
-Ben Blatt, 2004