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Artist Benigna Chilla Opens Art Show at BCC

Artist Benigna Chilla's Art Show, "From West to East to West," is on view through Oct. 28, 2022.

PITTSFIELD, MA — Internationally renowned artist Benigna Chilla's solo art exhibition, "From West to East to West," is on view at Berkshire Community College (BCC)'s Koussevitzsky Gallery through Friday, Oct. 28. Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Specializing in the intersections between math, design and architecture, Chilla creates multi-layered paintings and wall hangings with vibrant colors and rich, varied textures. This exhibition features the artist's recent series of large paintings, created after a 2011 stay in Bhutan and her retirement from BCC as a professor of visual arts.

Chilla's artistic process begins with inspiration from geometric patterns found in architecture, textiles and nature. She explores both organic and constructed geometric shapes, which are organized through symmetry, and says the meditative and physical process of painting is as important to her as the final pieces themselves. The paintings in the exhibition feature actual texture embedded onto the canvas, layered with natural pigment like turmeric, saffron and minerals.

Chilla studied in her native Germany at the Folkwangschule in Essen and the Academy of Fine Arts in Berlin. She moved to America in 1969, completing her graduate studies at the State University of New York at Albany and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She held Visiting Assistant or Artist-in-Residence positions at the University of Massachusetts, Brown University, Cornell University and the Rhode Island School of Design until 1980, when she became a faculty member at Berkshire Community College. She has also held residencies at Yaddo, the Djerassi Foundation, the Atlantic Center for the Arts and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts.

At age 82, Chilla has continued to steadily produce work from her home studio in Chatham, New York as well as exhibit and lecture all over the world.

Artist Benigna Chilla

Between Earth and Sky 2017"Between Earth and Sky," 2017

Ceremonial Place 2018"Ceremonial Place," 2018