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BIOGRAPHY - Ben Bauer B. 1980

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Ben Bauer’s deep roots in the landscape of forests and high plains in the upper midwest are the source of his commitment to “recording a natural history” in his paintings. Like many people who have witnessed the continuing depletion of open land in once-pristine regions, Bauer is acutely aware of how quickly ecosystems can be damaged or destroyed; and how easily that loss can be justified under the auspices of economic development.

Born in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1980, Bauer grew up in a family that introduced him to the pleasures of outdoor living, whether enjoying a summer weekend in the countryside or participating in annual duck-hunting expeditions. The sense of camaraderie among the men in his family as they tramped through river valleys and wetlands provided the younger boys, including Bauer, with both an education in the natural world and a personal awareness of the cycles of each season. Seen from this intimate perspective, the shift from spring to summer reveals a gradual unfolding, just as the tonal shifts from white to grey and brown in a winter landscape can only be understood when studied over time.

This sincere connection to the natural world ultimately led the young Bauer to turn his fondness for cartooning on his school notebooks to focus on drawing wildlife scenes instead. As he noted in a recent interview, “I’ve always had a pencil in my hand since fourth grade.” By eighth grade, he discovered wildlife painters and printmakers, such as David Maass, who specialized in waterfowl imagery; and soon thereafter, Bauer created his first entry for the Minnesota Junior Duck Stamp competition. The federally sponsored Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp Contest (the “Duck Stamp”) was initiated by President Franklin Roosevelt in 1934 as a source of funding for the conservation of wetlands and upland habitats throughout the US. Since that time, the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Wildlife Refuge System has been able to conserve over five million acres of land. In Minnesota, this program is complemented by the Department of Natural Resources which sponsors the Junior Duck Stamp competition as well. Although Bauer did not win the competition, he did place first among his age group--no small accomplishment in a field of 1100 student entries.

This early predilection for drawing provided the impetus for Bauer to take “every art course that was offered” in his North St. Paul high school, and ultimately led him to an art major at the University of Wisconsin-Stout in Menomonie, where he majored in painting. Although he was not overly impressed by what was then considered fashionable painting at the University, Bauer was introduced to a variety of technical and intellectual fields that would benefit him as an artist in the future. In addition, two of his professors, Tamara Brantmeier and Charles Lume, were especially instrumental in guiding Bauer to develop his own style.

Not surprisingly, Bauer has continued his art education on the internet. Like many artists, he has discovered art history online and has absorbed the work of artists as divergent as George Inness (1825-94) and the California landscapist, Edgar Payne (1882-1947). Bauer also notes that online sites for connecting with other contemporary artists have been an important source for sharing information and establishing a network of like-minded professionals.

Bauer’s work continues to evolve as he explores the imagery of the landscapes around him. A primary objective remains the preservation of these landscapes, whether it is a prairie restoration or the creation of land stewardship trusts to protect existing farmland from development. Because of this profound awareness of the land, Bauer’s paintings capture a strong sense of place, whether it is early spring along Elmo Creek or the vast horizon of a winter wheat field. Most recently, his oil paintings have also become studies in what he describes as “ever-changing and temperamental oil paint.” These works are further explorations in the nature of his medium, as well as reflections of the transitory qualities of seasonal cycles.

Janet Whitmore, Ph.D.

 

AVAILABLE WORKS
ben_bauer_bb1108_fort_bragg_rocks_and_water_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Fort Bragg Rocks and Water
Oil on aluminum
12 x 16 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1109_big_sur_morning_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Big Sur Morning
Oil on aluminum
12 x 16 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1110_moonrise_in_lowry_mn_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Moonrise in Lowry, MN
Oil on aluminum
24 x 30 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1107_on_arcola_mibbs_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
On Arcola Mills
Oil on panel
24 x 26 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1102_st_croix_country_farm_by_moonlight_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
St. Croix County Farm by Moonlight
Oil on panel
28 x 34 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1103_buffalo_county_nordic_star_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Buffalo County Nordic Star
Oil on aluminum
32 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1105_keys_beach_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Key Beach
Oil on aluminum
8 x 12 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1096_perfect_winters_day_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Perfect Winters Day
Oil on panel
28 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1099_dusk_and_bonfires_on_the_st_croix_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Dusk and Bonfires on the St Croix
Oil on canvas
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1095_oregon_coast_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Oregon Coast
Oil on panel
10 x 12 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1093_when_we_walk_these_fields_2_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
When We Walk These Fields #2
Oil on panel
11 x 18 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1087_sartell_farm_portrait_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Sartell Farm Portrait
Oil on canvas
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1044_a_dunn_county_relic_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
A Dunn County Relic
Oil on canvas on board
24 x 29 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1066_country_road_4_farmstead_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
County Road 4 Farmstead
Oil on canvas-panel
30 x 40 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1057_texas_spring_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Texas Spring
Oil on canvas-panel
24 x 30 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1045_grant_township_farm_by_moonlight_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Grant Township Farm by Moonlight
Oil on canvas-panel
20 x 26 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1031_moments_after_day_break_lowry_mn_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Moments After Day Break, Lowry, MN
Oil on canvas-panel
30 x 40 inches
Signed
Sold Works
ben_bauer_bb1101_grant_barns_at_night_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Grant Barns at Night
Oil on panel
12 x 16 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1106_moonset_7_minutes_to_sun_up_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Moonset, 7 Minutes to Sun Up
Oil on panel
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1100_fire_flies_at_lake_mary_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Fire Flies at Lake Mary
Oil on panel
12 x 16 inches
Signed; also signed, titled, and dated 2019 on the reverse.
ben_bauer_bb1104_sombrero_beach_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Sombrero Beach
Oil on aluminum
10 x 14 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1048_soft_ending_in_lowry_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Soft Ending at Lowry
Oil on canvas on board
8 x 10 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1098_quiet_night_by_moonlight_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Quiet Night by Moonlight
Oil on canvas on board
36 x 32 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1097_minnesota_glacial_lakes_area_at_dusk_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Minnesota Glacial lakes Area at Dusk
Oil on canvas
28 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1091_quilt_trail_pattern_by_moonlight_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Quilt Trail Pattern by Moonlight
Oil on canvas
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1092_when_we_walk_these_fields_3_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
When We Walk These Fields #3
Oil on panel
11 x 18 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1094_fall_in_minnesota_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Fall in Minnesota
Oil on panel
7 x 8 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1090_on_the_way_to_the_fredricksons_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
On The Way To The Fredrickson's
Oil on canvas
28 x 34 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1089_south_of_knapp_by_moonlight_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
South of Knapp by Moonlight
Oil on canvas
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1088_aitkin_city_limits_at_night_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Aitkin City Limits at Night
Oil on canvas
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1085_rush_river_township_nocturne_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Rush River Township Nocturne 2018
Oil on panel
10 x 12 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1086_grant_township_nocturne_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Grant Township Nocturne
Oil on canvas on board
10 x 12 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1081_barn_and_woodduck_house_in_moonlight_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Barn and Woodduck House in Moonlight
Oil on canvas on board
10 x 12 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1083_st_croix_valley_marshes_at_dusk_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
St. Croix Valley Marshes at Dusk
Oil on canvas on board
8 x 8 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1082_ hoffman_hills_moonset_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Hoffman Hills Moonset
Oil on canvas on board
8 x 8 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1078_grammas_little_gardens_in_the_moon_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Gramma's Little Gardens in the Moonlight
Oil on canvas
10 x 12 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1080_rush_river_relic_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Rush River Relic
Oil on panel
10 x 12 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1077_when_we_walk_these_fields_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
When We Walk These Fields
Oil on panel
11 x 14 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1076_summer_night_by_moonlight_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Summer Night By Moonlight
Oil on canvasboard
8 x 10 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1075_sandspur_beach_florida_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Sandspur Beach, Florida
Oil on canvas
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1074_moonlit_scene_at_cushing_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Moonlit Scene at Cushing
Oil on canvas
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1072_door_county_wheat_and_weather_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Door County Wheat and Weather
Oil on canvas
36 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1071_early_autumn_soybeans_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Early Autumn Soybeans
Oil on panel
30 x 48 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1069_approaching_0_degrees_lake_elmo_farm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Approaching 0 Degrees, Lake Elmo Farm
Oil on canvas on board
30 x 48 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1047_soft_night_at_hoffman_hills_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Soft Night at Hoffman Hills
Oil on canvas on board
8 x 10 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1036_snow_in_mondovi_study_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Snow in Mondovi, Study
Oil on canvas-panel
9 x 12 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1068_st_croix_valley_sunset_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
St. Croix Valley Sunset
Oil on canvas on board
29 x 39 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1065_late_summer_soybeans_ellsworth_wi_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Late Summer Soybeans - Ellsworth, WI
Oil on panel
32 x 35 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1067_sauk_rapids_farm_by_moonlight_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Sauk Rapids Farm by Moonlight
Oil on canvas on board
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1062_september_fields_lowry_mn_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
September Fields, Lowry, MN
Oil on canvas on board
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1063_simply_calm_grant_farm_by_moonlight_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Simply Calm - Grant Farm by Moonlight
Oil on canvas on board
32 x 35 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1059_buffalo_county_wi_night_lights_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Buffalo County, WI., Night Lights
Oil on canvas on board
29 x 37 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1058_3_am_big_marine_farm_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
3 am, Big Marine Farm
Oil on canvas on board
32 x 35 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1054_lake_thompson_rhinelander_wi_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Lake Thompson, Rhinelander, WI
Oil on canvas on board
24 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1053_hill_country_moonrise_blue_bonnets_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Hill Country Moonrise: Blue Bonnets & Indian Paintbrush
Oil on canvas on board
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1052_early_morning_fog_burn_lake_elmo_farm_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Early Morning Fog Burn, Lake Elmo Farm
Oil on canvas-panel
30 x 40 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1051_bonfire_time_baileys_harbor_door_county_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Bonfire Time - Baileys Harbor, Door County, WI
Oil on canvas on board
28 x 34 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1032_last_light_with_moonrise_over_spring_valley_wi_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Last Light with Moonrise over Spring Valley, WI
Oil on canvas on board
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1042_lowry_farm_moonrise_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Lowry Farm, Moonrise
Oil on canvas on board
30 x 40 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1043_mondovi_farm_by_moonlight_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Mondovi Farm by Moonlight
Oil on canvas
30 x 50 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1034_fields_of_mondavi_study_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Fields of Mondovi, Study
Oil on panel
8 x 10 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1033_subtle_at_baileys_harbor_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Subtle at Baileys Harbor
Oil on canvas on board
9 x 12 inches
Signed and dated 2012
ben_bauer_bb1038_may_storm_over_glacier_lake_mn_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
May Storm Over Glacier Lake, MN
Oil on canvas on board
30 x 34 inches
Signed and dated 2013
ben bauer_lake_elmo_farm_by_moonlight_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Lake Elmo Farm by Moonlight
Oil on canvas on board
32 x 35 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1036_off_county_road_12_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Off County Road 12
Oil on canvas on board
20 x 22 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1030_red_rock_moonrise_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Red Rock Moonrise
Oil on canvas-panel
28 x 26 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1021_spring_ignition_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Spring Ignition
Oil on canvas-panel
30 x 34 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1025_early_spring_evening_south_dakota_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Early Spring Eve, South Dakota
Oil on canvas on board
29 x 32 inches
Signed and dated 2012
ben_bauer_bb1028_montana_early_spring_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Montana, Early Spring
Oil on canvas on board
24 x 26 inches
Signed and dated '12
ben_bauer_bb1029_st_croix_valley_barn_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
St. Croix Valley Barn
Oil on canvas on board
25 x 30 inches
Signed and dated 2012
ben_bauer_bb1024_eagan_at_pre_dusk_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Eagan at Pre-Dusk
Oil on canvas
20 x 26 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1022_signs_of_life_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Signs of Life
Oil on canvas on board
10 x 25 inches
Signed twice
ben_bauer_bb1015_soft_in_wilernie_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Soft in Wilernie
Oil on canvas on board
19 x 21 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1020_spring_moonrise_in_south_dakota_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Spring Moonrise in South Dakota
Oil on canvas on board
24 x 29 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1017_another_perfect_end_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Another Perfect End
Oil on canvas on board
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1013_another_perfect_end_study_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Another Perfect End (Study)
Oil on canvas on board
6 x 8 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1016_wilernie_moonrise_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Wilernie Moonrise
Oil on canvas on board
30 x 36 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1019_starbuck_moonrise_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Starbuck Moonrise
Oil on canvas
36 x 40 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1018_dusks_prelude_to_evening_with_moon_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Dusk's Prelude to Evening with Moon
Oil on canvas on board
18 x 19 inches
ben_bauer_bb1010_shoreline_at_white_bear_lake_at_dawn_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Shoreline at White Bear Lake at Dawn
Oil on canvas on board
30 x 34 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1011_elmo_hangers_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Elmo Hangers - Lake Elmo, MN
Oil on canvas on board
18 x 19 inches
Signed; also signed and titled on the reverse
ben_bauer_bb1012_rawleys_bay_baileys_harbor_wi_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Rawleys Bay - Baileys Harbor, WI
Oil on canvas on board
16 x 18 inches
Signed; also signed, and titled on the reverse
ben_bauer_bb1007_the_beauty_in_grays_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
The Beauty in Winter's Grays
Oil on canvas on board
18 x 19 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1009_27_below_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
27 Below
Oil on canvas on board
28 x 32 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1005_lake_mary_barn_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Lake Mary Barn
Oil on canvas
20 x 20 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1006_elmo_creek_awakens_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Elmo Creek Awakens
Oil on canvas on board
22 x 24 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1003_waxing_gibbous_at_pre-dusk_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Waxing Gibbous at Pre-Dusk
Oil on canvas
30 x 40 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1000_st_croix_valley_view_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
St. Croix Valley View
Oil on canvas on board
16 x 18 inches
Signed
ben_bauer_bb1001_crusted_snow_and_old_fence_posts_wm_small.jpg
Ben Bauer
B. 1980
Crusted Snow and Old Fence Posts
Oil on canvas
30 x 36 inches
Signed