Alex Benedict

fine art prints • photography




Link and Shift


This series is inspired by renku, a form of collaborative linked poetry invented in Japan and now practiced by poets worldwide.


In renku, the concept of “link and shift” is all-important. Requiring that a verse establish a link to the previous verse and yet shift away to a new idea encourages poetic conversations to progress elegantly from topic to topic. Rules for how to achieve a link or a shift are so detailed that they can seem limiting. Yet the process often leads to deeply satisfying interplays of formal structure and collaborative creativity.


For me, visual art involves similar kinds of formal collaboration, on many levels. First, with myself–as memory links my passage through life events I bring to my work. Then, with materials and tools–software, printers, inks, and paper. And ultimately, with those who inspire me, offer opinion about my work,  and become my audience.

© copyright 2019 Alex Benedict