Eric Banks’ work is very physical. Having produced sculpture in clay, metal, and out of found objects earlier in his career, Banks now manipulates media and surface, creating works in which grit, depth, and texture function in concert towards the arrival at form and color. He works on canvas and wood either with oil or in acrylic, paper and pencil. Multiple pieces are worked simultaneously for a length of time and involve a process combining “fusion” (paper adhered to and mixed with acrylic, etc.), excision, abrasion, and gridding.
Metaphysically pushing and pulling at formulation of imagery and its spatial container, Banks separates shapes with thick borders or exposed background. Tension between forms, which never meet, resonates with a motif of isolation. Interestingly, Banks approaches a blank surface without intention or preconception and works nearly unconsciously until he identifies a “pictorial stasis.” He describes a finished painting as a frozen moment when the action stops and the “picture” arises. Subject matter is comprised of biomorphic forms hinting at paradoxical macro/microcosmic vacillations.
Brooklyn-native, Banks continues to live and work in Brooklyn, NY. In 1977, he obtained his B.A. from Queens College of the City University of New York, NY. After receiving his M.F.A. from Maryland Institute College of Art, Hoffberger School of Painting in 1981, Banks was awarded the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant, Edward Albee Foundation Grant, and Walters Fellowship. Banks has exhibited nationally; most-recently, his work has been on view at NYC galleries, such as Amos Eno Gallery and Sideshow Gallery.