Artist Biography

1971 – 2021

Jason Benjamin paintings are known by their minimalist style. Billed as one of the top 50 most collectable Australian artists, Jason Benjamin was born in Melbourne in 1971, before growing up in the United States and Mexico in his youth. After brief periods of study at The Stony Brook School on Long Island and the Pratt Institute in New York City, he returned to Australia in the early 1990s, where he settled until his death in 2021.

Whether his choice of subject is a sweeping landscape, a floral composition or a beautiful nude, Jason Benjamin paintings have a mysterious, haunting edge. From his first group show in downtown Manhattan in 1989 to 2016 he has had over 40 solo shows in Australia, Tokyo, London, Hong Kong, Singapore and Rome. He has twice been a finalist in the Archibald Prize at the Art Gallery NSW, and in 2005 he won the Packing Room Prize with a portrait of actor Bill Hunter called ‘Staring Down the Past’.

Learn more about Jason Benjamin paintings here and find Jason Benjamin art for sale above. At Berkeley Editions, we have an exclusive range of Jason Benjamin limited edition prints which will only gain value over time.

Celebrating Jason Benjamin

A wonderful husband, father, friend & talented artist.

It is with a heavy heart that we at Berkeley Editions, and the art world as a whole, say goodbye to one of our closest friends and talented contributors to the community, Jason Benjamin. Jason contributed greatly to the world of portraits, still life and landscape art, complimenting his works with his poetry and heartfelt writings. Outside of art, Jason’s passions were his family – his beautiful wife and children, and his chosen family of friends.


The Magnificent Life of Jason Benjamin

Jason was an incredible painter and writer, and one who remained modestly unsure of his own bright talent throughout his career. He was widely acclaimed and collected by major corporations and institutions globally. Jason felt life in all of its ebbs and flows, and this intense perception of the world around him came out in his art and poetry.

His paintings, which ranged from landscapes to still life and portrait work, were always emotionally charged and visually lush. His poetry showed his romantic takings on life and landscape, but also detailed his struggles with life and art.

Jason Benjamin was a chef and found solace in the nighttimes when he was able to paint and transform his creative outlets. It wasn’t until 1995 that he decided to become a full time painter.

Jason was born in Melbourne in 1971, however didn’t stay still in his younger years, spending periods of his childhood in the US and Mexico, as well as studying on scholarship at The Stony Brook School and Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York.

The Incredible Works of Jason Benjamin

Benjamin was regarded as one of our top artists, who was a finalist in the Archibald Prize in 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2015.
His painting of late actor Bill Hunter titled Staring down the past won the Archibald Packing Room Prize in 2005.

His other Archibald works have included artist McLean Edwards and musicians Paul Kelly and Tim Rogers.” – Daily Telegraph.

It was these portraits in the Archibald that first gained him national attention as an artist. Jason ending up having more than 40 solo shows in Australia, Tokyo, London, Hong Kong, Singapore and Rome.

Although known for his portrait paintings, it was arguably his landscape paintings where you could find most of his emotion, soul-searching and heart. The titling of his landscape works leaves the audience standing from the outside looking in to his pondering and considerations. His beautiful online portfolio gives the world a time stamped glimpse into these emotions, with titles such as “Flying In and Filling Up My Hopeless Heart”, “More That He Could Hold”, “You Were Gone”, “Because Of You, I See A Light” and perhaps in this moment one of the most relevant and beautiful, “Set Yourself Free”.

When painting a landscape he wasn’t just creating a representation of it, he was capturing what is truly felt to be in each individual location. He would describe his landscapes as “romanticized versions of reality” and would dread being called a “photo-realist” painter, although he used photographs as reference for paintings.

Jason’s work has touched and inspired many and will continue to touch those who encounter his paintings or prints.

Robyn Berkeley is grateful to have personally known and loved Jason Benjamin not only for his incredible art, but for the soft and beautiful person he was. We send our love and thoughts to his family and to all those who knew him.


A selection of articles paying tribute to Jason Benjamin

The Guardian

ABC News

The Australian

The Daily Telegraph

2016 Balentes: Life Of An Ancient Soul (Sardinia) Tusculum House, Sydney
2015 “Practicing Calligraphy” Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane
2015 “The Dreamers” Australian High Commission, Singapore
2014 “Poems in an Elemental Garden” Michael Reid Gallery, Sydney
2014 “Awoke in Light” Buratti Fine Art, Perth
2013 “Everyone Is Here” Touring survey exhibition Wagga Wagga, Griffith, Dubbo, Cowra, Bathurst, Blue Mountains, Hazelhurst
2013 Artist in Residence, RedGate Gallery, Beijing China
2013 “Great Adventures” Jan Murphy Gallery
2012 “Post History” Scott Livesey Galleries, Melbourne
2011 “The Waiting Garden” Greenhill Galleries, Perth
2011 “I thought you’d always be here” BMG ART, Adelaide
2011 “Jason Benjamin – Drawings” Michael Reid at Elizabeth Bay
2010 “We Build Cities” Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane
2010 “Shelter” Michael Reid at Elizabeth Bay
2009 “The Kiss of Life” BMG ART, Adelaide
2009 “The Calling” Artist in Residence, The Art Vault, Mildura
2008 “Written on Land” Michael Reid at Elizabeth Bay
2008 “Who you’re supposed to be” Art Obsession, Hillside Forum, Tokyo
2008 “Have you become my body?” Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane
2007 “Set Yourself Free” Metro 5 Gallery, Melbourne
2007 “Seven Paths to her Heart” Art Obsession Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
2007 “If the air could speak” Galleria Tondinelli, Rome, Italy
2006 “Where do dreams go?” BMG ART, Adelaide
2006 “Borderland” Greenhill Galleries, Perth
2005 “This is a place” Metro 5 Gallery, Melbourne
2005 “Because of you I see a light” Metro 5 Gallery, Sydney Art Fair
2004 “Lost time” Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane
2004 “In a heartbeat” Metro 5 Gallery, Melbourne
2003 “Don’t look down” Nicola Townsend & Art Obsession Gallery, Daikenyama, Tokyo, Japan
2003 “The Clearing” Greenhill Galleries, Perth
2002 “Lifting up the Sun” Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney
2002 “Unbound” Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane
2002 “This is love” Metro 5 Gallery, Melbourne
2001 “I found the world so new” Tim Olsen Gallery & Amanda Wolfe-Daimpre, 10 Chancery Lane Gallery Soho, Central, Hong Kong
2001 “Stronger than you think” 28 Charlotte St Gallery, London, UK
2001 “Make it home” Nellie Castan Gallery, Melbourne
2000 “Belong” Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney
2000 “Hold” Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane
2000 “The hand upon your back” Greenhill Galleries, Perth
1999 “First came joy” Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney
1998 “There are things you don’t see coming” Olsen Carr Art Dealers, Sydney
1998 “Hopeful Prey” Greenhill Galleries, Perth
1997 “Ghosts amongst the angels” Olsen Carr Art Dealers, Sydney
1996 “Covered by the rushes” Olsen Carr Art Dealers, Sydney
1993 “The apple trees” Crawford Gallery, Sydney
1990 Trinity College, Dallas, Texas, USA

2013 Tattersalls Landscape Prize, Brisbane
2012 Tattersalls Landscape Prize, Brisbane
2011 Tattersalls Landscape Prize, Brisbane
2010 Tattersalls Landscape Prize, Brisbane
2005 Archibald Prize, Art Gallery of New South Wales
2005 Newcastle Regional Art Gallery
2005 Moree Plains Gallery
2005 Cowra Art Gallery
2005 Albury Regional Art Gallery
2005 Victorian Arts Centre
2005 Jan Murphy Gallery
2004 “Post-Modern and Contemporary Australian Art”, Savill Galleries, Sydney
2004 Archibald Prize, Art Gallery of New South Wales
2003 “William Creek and Beyond”, Ballarat Fine Art Gallery touring exhibition, Shepparton Art Gallery, Tamworth City Gallery, New England Regional Art Museum, Noosa Regional Art Gallery, Gold Coast City Gallery, Gladstone Regional Art Gallery Museum, The Drill Hall Gallery, Canberra Cowra Art Gallery.
Savill Contemporary, Melbourne
2003 Art Miami, Rebecca Hossack Gallery, Miami, USA
2002 3-person show, Bunkamura Gallery, in conjunction with Nicola Townsend and Hirokazu Degawa Tokyo, Japan
2002 4×4 Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane
2002 Art London 2002, London, England
2002 The Doug Moran National Portrait Prize,
2002 First Birthday Exhibition, Metro 5 Gallery, Melbourne
2001 Art London 2001, Rebecca Hossack Gallery, London, England
2001 Nicola Townsend, Tokyo, Japan
2001 Landscape Painting, Metro 5 Gallery, Melbourne
2001 Hills Grammar Art Award, Sydney
2000 Meet 2 x 2, Tim Olsen Gallery Sydney
2000 Ten Australian Artists, Australian high commission Singapore
2000 Nicola Townsend, Tokyo, Japan
2000 Kings School Art Prize, Sydney
2000 Norvill Landscape Prize, Murrundi
2000 Conrad Jupiter Art Prize, Brisbane
2000 Fleurieu Landscape Prize, South Australia
2000 Tattersalls Landscape prize, Sydney
1999 Millennium Art Prize
1999 University and Schools Club, Sydney
1999 Westpac Art Prize, SCEGGS Redlands, Sydney
1999 Tattersalls Landscape Prize, Brisbane
1999 Kings School Art Prize, Sydney
1998 Salon de Refuses, SH Erwin Gallery, Sydney
1998 Painting is not Dead, Olsen Carr Art Dealers, Sydney
1998 Australian Contemporary Art Fair, Melbourne
1997 Kings School Art Prize, Sydney
1997 Jeans for Genes, Gianni Versace, Powerhouse Museum, Sydney Devoured by Paint
1997 Olsen Carr Art Dealers, Sydney
1996 Mosman Art Prize, Sydney
1995 Exhibition with furniture, David Jones, Sydney
1994 Mosman Art Prize, Sydney
1994 Exhibition for David Jones Spring Flower Show, Sydney
1993 Mosman Art Prize, Sydney
1993 Salon de Refuses, SH Erwin Gallery, Sydney
1991 Gary Anderson Gallery, Sydney
1989 Mars, New York City
Australian National Gallery, Canberra
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Derwent Collection, Tasmania
Artbank, Sydney
Tweed River Regional Art Gallery
Bendigo Art Gallery, Victoria
National Portrait Gallery, Canberra
Macquarie Bank, Victoria
Ballarat Art Gallery, Victoria
Shepperton Art Gallery, Victoria
Gold Coast City Gallery, Queensland
Mornington Peninsular Regional Gallery
Art Space Makay. Regional Art Gallery and Museum
Castlemaine Regional Art Gallery
Parliament House Art Collection
2014 Finalist, Archibald Prize
2013 Finalist, Fleurieu Landscape Prize
2013 Finalist, Archibald Prize
2012 Finalist, Gold Award, Rockhampton Art Gallery
2012 Finalist, Rick Amor Drawing Prize, Bendigo Art Gallery
2011 Finalist, Archibald Prize
2011 Finalist, Tattersall’s Landscape Prize
2011 Finalist, Albany Art Prize
2010 Finalist, Tattersal’s Landscape Prize
2006 Finalist, Doug Moran Portrait Prize
2005 Packing Room Prize, Archibald Prize, Art Gallery of New South Wales
2004 Finalist, Archibald Prize, Art Gallery of New South Wales
2002 Finalist, The Doug Moran National Portrait Prize
1997 Kings School Art Prize
2004, Unfinished Journey, overseas project, exhibition and publication
2003, Queen Mary 11, London, sixteen paintings for new cruise ship
2002 William Creek and Beyond
2001, Lake Eyre and Beyond, collaborative project involving ten prominent artists for exhibition, a publication and print folio
2001, Burswood Hotel, Perth
2000 Chanel, Australia