Billy Al Bengston (*1934 in Dodge City, Kansas)
is an American artist and sculptor. Bengston’s fondness for motorcycles influences his artworks, which often consist of vibrant lacquer on metal.
He also works on paper and canvas. Besides motorcycle culture, surfing and his life in California and Hawaii give the artist’s works their character.
In 1955 he went to California College of Arts in Oakland followed by studies at Otis Art Institute in LA. Since 1958 there have been various solo exhibitions in LA with Ferus Gallery. His first solo museum exhibition was in 1968 at LACMA. The 1960s were shaped by professional motorcycle racing. In 1974 he visited Hawaii for the first time.
Bengston surfs and paints in Venice Beach and Honolulu.
Exhibitions and Distinctions (Selection)
“Endless Summer”, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, USA
“California Dreaming: Ed Moses, Billy Al Bengston, Ed Ruscha”, New Britain Museum of American Art, USA
“Still Life with Fish: Photography from the Collection”, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, USA “Los Angeles, – a Fiction”, Astrup Fearnley Museet, Oslo, Norway
“Drawing in L.A.: The 1960s and 70s”, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, USA
“Selections from the Permanent Collection”, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, USA
“Craig Turned On The Light and California Art Bloomed”, Honolulu Museum of Art, Hawaii.
“Sinister Pop”, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA