Benko Art Gallery

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John Benko

    John Benko is a contemporary artist who now lives and works in South Lake Tahoe.  His work can be identified by his use of colorful backgrounds overlaid with highly stylized tight line work.  John was classically trained in art school at Kent State University in Ohio.  He then went on to start his own graphic design business before moving to San Francisco to paint full time.  John's style quickly developed along with his reputation as a "Live Painter" in the San Francisco music scene.  His training in many mediums makes John a versatile artist with the capability of accepting commissions of a wide variety.  As the owner of the Benko Art Gallery, John is on the lookout for up and coming local artists who "in his eye" are the new trendsetters of today's Art World.

Find John on Facebook:  @JohnBenkoArt

The art of Scott Forrest has graced the pages of Rolling Stone, Newsweek and Spin Magazine. His work is part of the permanent collection at The Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles.
Each monumental painting from the Forrest Collection takes on its own unique voice, some rhythmic and textural, drawing from inspiration by De Kooning and Motherwell, with others featuring Forrest’s signature bold and sweeping brush strokes as seen in ancient Japanese Ink Painting. Every painting features an unexpected visceral and multi-dimensional visual experience for the viewer in 3D.
“I love the immediate satisfaction of the ‘One-Brush’ style, trusting that my initial thought will swipe the color just as I intended. It’s so pure and honest, as if nature encompassed me for that one stroke.”
Instagram: @ScottForrestArt
Derek Heinemann

     Derek Heinemann, a postmodern metaphysical artist, began his artistic endeavors at the age of six through participation in community art competitions. He continues to develop his style and aesthetics daily as he strongly believes in the proverb, "practice is the mother of learning." These strengths propelled Derek into the professional arena where his involvement in various galleries and fine art productions establish him as well known Bay Area artist.

        Derek leads his own crew, where his art direction reflects his strong work ethic and technical proficiency. A fan of working with mixed mediums, Derek uses anything from found objects, watercolors, acrylics and digital enhancement to create his vision. Based out of Oakland, Derek produces art that is studied and accepted internationally. Many of Heinemann's cohorts state that his art invokes a sense of culture with a tangent to an ethereal and metaphysical state. The truth embedded in Derek's work moves the viewer from a mere spectator to a participant in the inscape of his artistic journey.
Logan Walden

" Art is the result and continuation of inspiration. Art has no limit nor pressure to be "perfect". Art is our past, present, and future. Art is a portal."

I was born in Northern Kentucky in 1986 and was raised in rural southern Ohio.  My brothers and I were brought up in a creative environment with a father who painted wildlife for a living and a mother who was determined to expose her sons to as many creative outlets as possible: art, music, dance, travel, improv comedy, and many hours spent in nature where we were told to rely on our imaginations. My Father has been a huge inspiration for my path as an artist.

Matthew DeGrado

    Matthew DeGrado is a visionary artist with an organic and highly skilled technique of painting. 

     "Art is the vehicle for transformation that has guided my personal and spiritual growth. I believe the creative process of art has divine origins. It has the potential to bring both the creator and the viewer into an experience of shared oneness. At the heart of my work I desire to communicate visions of healing and redemption."    

                                ~M. DeGrado

Jake Gillispie

    Jake Gillispie is an extremely talented artist in South Lake Tahoe using recycled materials and triggering our interactions with nature, Earth and our emotions.  His style is easily recognized by hand drawn line work over washes of paint.  He oftern paints directly onto cross sections of wood and other recycled materials.  He has a wide variety of pieces here at the Benko Art Gallery including a hand made wakeboard !

William Eichelberger

    William Eichelberger is a local South Lake Tahoe artist with a unique style of his own.  His work can be identified by his use of wheat pasted images on hand painted, recycled wood surfaces.  The subject matter that he incorporates into his paintings often reflect the things that surround him in his life.  His new works are becoming larger than life and are really something to see at the Benko Art Gallery. 

Chelsea Kosta

    Chelsea Kosta is a South Lake Tahoe artist who likes to work BIG!  Her beautiful abstract paintings are made by applying layers of paint with a pallet knife.  Through the application of countless layers of paint and varnish, Chelsea's pieces have a deep visual depth and surface texture.  Her large masterpieces invoke a deep calming presence.  Come in to the Benko Art Gallery and witness them for yourself!
Dylan Warren

    Dylan Warren is a South Lake Tahoe photographer with an eye for composition.  He is a true adventurer and will push himself to the limit to capture the right shot.  His dedication to art and nature shows through into each of his pieces.  Keep an eye out at the Benko Art Gallery for his smiling face and new works!
Ishka La

    Ishka La is a visionary artist from Berkeley, CA.  Her paintings are very colorful and spiritually connected with all things divine.  With her imagery, Ishka reveals a world of the eternal Beauty that is all things. A river of elementals, cosmic beings, and magical beasts swirl together in one great flood of light and shadow, emanating the shapes and colors illuminated within the Beloved’s kaleidoscope. With every turning of the wheel, an ever-changing cycle of Life appears. Dawn spills into the night sky, a blossom falls as a cherry grows; and the movement in our mind trickles down into a land where thoughts kneel before a pool of peaceful waters, watching silently, as Spirit emerges from the depths. 
John Kosta

    John Kosta is a southern California painter with an impressionistic style.  His plein air landscape paintings  bring out the mood of his surroundings onto his canvas.  John's years of training show through.  Subtle techniques and attention to lighting make his pieces believable to the eye.  We are proud to have his oil paintings on display here !
Whitmire Woodcraft

     The Benko Art Gallery is honored to have works on display by the Whitmires.  Whitmire Woodcraft specializes in creating unique wood bowls.  They also make freeform wood decor, decorative cutting boards, candle holders, decorative coat racks and wood vases.  Many of our pieces have stone or metal inlays.  You really have to come in and see these masterpieces! 

Kinetic Umbra

    Kinetic Umbra is an artist from Boston who has a very unique style of photography.  His photos on glass are of human form recorded through a single, long exposure digital photograph to reveal hidden organic geometry.  We are very excited to have these on display!