A Worcester Park painter inspired by the beauty of sunsets and the convenience of finger-painting is holding an exhibition in Ewell this week.

Surrey Comet:

Nick Benjamin, 45, holds an annual exhibition at Bourne Hall in which he displays his paintings –curving blocks of colour inspired by warm sunsets on the Epsom Downs and of the hills of South West Wales from his youth – and sells one-of-a-kind editions.

This year’s exhibition opened on Tuesday, February 23 and runs until Saturday, February 27.

Mr Benjamin (pictured below), from Avon Close, Worcester Park, has been oil painting for 20 years – with many of these years spent using his fingers.

Surrey Comet:

He found himself using his fingers to smooth out the paints so frequently that abandoning brushes altogether seemed like an obvious choice.

He explained: “It just means I can paint and blend a lot quicker and smoother.

“It allows you to have a real bond with the painting and you’re not stopping to wash the brushes all the time.

“It is really controlled – but I get through tonnes of baby wipes cleaning my brushes!”

Surrey Comet:

Aside from his unusual stylistic choices, Mr Benjamin’s exhibitions are also unique for his active and spontaneous approach to curating.

He can always be found finger-painting at his exhibitions, and while at Bourne Hall he will be creating a new piece of art on a large canvas.

Mr Benjamin said he did not have any specific idea in mind for his next masterpiece, but is excited to see how it will turn out.

He said: “One thing I hate at exhibitions is an artist or gallery owner who just sits there, watching you go around.

“The easiest way to get around that is to sit there doing some painting.

“It draws people to come in and have a look. If people come over to you it is a good opportunity to have a chat with them.

“Lots of people come back and forth through the exhibition and they can see a painting building up over a few days.”

Surrey Comet:

Mr Benjamin explained that his upbringing in Pembrokeshire inspired him in his earlier work, and his appreciation of nature continues to inspire him today.

He said: “When your formative years are spent surrounded by beautiful scenery it is inspirational.

“Even though you can see one every day, a decent sunset just leaves you going, ‘wow!’”

Surrey Comet:

Nick Benjamin’s exhibition runs at Bourne Hall in Spring Street, Ewell until Saturday, February 27.

It is open from 9am until 5pm on Friday, February 26 and from 9am until 4pm on Saturday, February 27.

For more information, please visit: www.nicksartworks.co.uk