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Ben Edmunds

The Aidan Threlfall scholarship gave me the excuse and means to travel to New York for the first time, during the first year of my MA studies at the Royal College of Art. The main purpose of the trip was to visit the 2017 Whitney Biennial, in which 63 of the most exciting young American artists were shown throughout the museum but it was also great to acquaint myself with a new city and its galleries. Many gallerists at the time were showing painters from Los Angeles who are difficult to see in London. They had a lightness of painterly touch and stripped back, easy going approach that really informed the work I made upon my return.

When applying for the prize, my work was concerned with ideas surrounding digital and analogue mark making. It was interesting to see how this was considered in exhibitions in New York, in particular at the ‘Post Analog Painting 2’ show at The Hole.

As well as seeing lots of contemporary art, I was happy to spend time in museums seeing 20th Century works. I was most excited to see the Matisse paintings at the Museum of Modern Art, in particular his famous ‘Red Studio’, which was always my favourite painting as a teenager and it didn’t disappoint!