Mazgaon Musings

Meet the extraordinary Ben Kenning; a remarkably talented local Newcastle artist, and also the well-deserving winner of last year’s Cooks Hill Galleries ‘We Get By’ competition, sponsored by Varley Group.

Cooks Hill Galleries is set to unveil an exhibition of Ben’s new ‘Mazgaon Musings’ catalogue tomorrow (Saturday February 13) from 3pm until 5pm. Ben will be present for the opening and available for a Q&A session; an unmissable event!

Inspired by a two month sojourn through southern India, Ben’s ‘Mazgaon Musings’ represent the ‘visual and sensory overload’ that he experienced during his travels.

India provided deep personal challenges for Ben, as he comprehended the mirage of 40 degree daily heat, fires by the road, the impressions of poverty, slums and over-population. It truly gave Ben context to ‘the insignificance of one’.

Ben’s studio in India was small, dusty and minimal with only a table, two chairs, lounge, kettle and bed (complete with bed bugs), a small area of wall and floor space covered in paper as studio space. It was 2 weeks until he was shown how to turn the hot water on.

So he painted, walked, drew, read Ghandi’s book and began to learn about Indian history, Islamic ways and the Muslim people. It was these incredible experiences that inspired Ben’s new works, which genuinely spark the senses and offer a feast of visual enchantment.

Contact Cooks Hill Galleries with any enquiries regarding the opening or Ben’s works on 02 4926 3899, or visit the CHG website at