December Artist 22 - 1

Leo and Jack Benvenuti - Strength & Honor: A Father & Son Art Show

Leo and Jack are two creative men who share their love of reading good books, fishing, winemaking, woodworking, gardening, and watching movies. They also share their last name as Leo is the father and Jack is the son. The title of the art show, “Strength and Honor” comes from one of their favorite movies, “Gladiator.” It’s become their unofficial motto for how to approach life.

The son: Jack Benvenuti has been painting since he could hold a brush. He studied Art at CalState Northridge and loves to draw, paint and throw pots on the wheel…but the one medium he always returns to is painting. His works create a commentary on innocence and experience and often have a satirical view of culture. He is part of the radical contemporary urban movement. Jack calls his style, “ironic graffiti.” 

Jack has exhibited as far west as Los Angeles and as far north as Minneapolis. His day job is working with children, especially those with special needs. He says he receives so much more than he could ever give working with his kiddos.

Jack is happy to be involved with the charitable works of the YMCA and delighted to be exhibiting with his dad.

The father: Leo Benvenuti is a writer who loves to paint. While having much success as a screenwriter, (including “The Santa Clause” and “Space Jam”). Leo picked up painting as a creative outlet from the sometimes not creative aspects of show business. It soon became his passion. Leo has exhibited all over the world and many of his works hang in some very famous homes. When it comes to strength and honor, Leo looks no further than his son Jack, who he says is the strongest and most honorable man he knows.

If you have to categorize Leo’s style, it would be unconscious spontaneous figurative expressionism. Or in plain speak, with no preconceived idea or direction, Leo lets his subconscious spontaneously create something on a canvas. He brushes, pours, scratches, spills, scrapes off, and reapplies paint until he sees something appear; a face, figure, setting, etc. He then starts improvising with that form with more detailed paintwork, adding or taking away, until he feels it’s finished. Even the titles of the paintings come to him out of the blue. It’s hard to describe his unique approach to creating and even he has a hard time explaining how he does what he does.