About Ben Taylor
Born in 1970, in Australia, I grew up living in Nigeria, Scotland, and England, with exposure to many countries and cultures over the years due to travel-loving parents. Troubled teens were reflected in poor academic grades, with only creativity and music holding my interest. Attending art college led me to become a modelmaker (constructing architectural models, advertising sets and props, and product design prototypes). As computers began to replace traditional skills, I stumbled across skydiving, amongst other risky activities, and decided to go partying and travelling instead. When the money ran out, I retrained as a CGI artist, creating billboard and magazine images for advertising agencies, spending another decade as a company director working between London and New York, and generally “living the high life” with gusto, until eventually, unaddressed and repressed past traumas finally overtook the party lifestyle, and a breakdown ensued!
In a search for healing, a profound encounter with an ancient African spiritual tradition led me to question deeply, not only the life I had been living, but my entire worldview. As a result of that questioning, I quit my career in London and travelled to Gabon in Central Africa to undergo an initiation into the tradition of Bwiti, and started to engage with life in a different way. I became a married man, and we headed west to the wilds of Dartmoor, and a cabin deep in the woods. After many years of working for, and on, other people’s designs and ideas, I began a re-exploration of my own artistry and inspirations, whether as a trapeze artist, a DJ, a painter or a gardener. Meditating and deep-diving into the realm of plants and magic, learning, adopting and adapting. Life continues now to be a treasure trove of creative inspiration to draw from.
My art practice moves between painting and more three-dimensional, sculptural work. I like to mix both natural materials, found on travels and daily walks in the forest, with my Magpie’s eye for repurposed and up-cycled gems. The intention of respect and honour is always held throughout the themes of this work, as it is with the more figurative and abstract paintings that I create using more traditional mediums of oils and acrylics.
As well as my own art practice, I have also taught creativity and artistry workshops and classes, work as a gardener, and as a guide. Within my teaching work, I try to promote the deep meditative experience, joy, and the limitless potential that comes from getting out of the way, and being the creative process itself.
The moniker I use for my artwork is Mometo. A Babongo name, received through the tradition of Bwiti, it roughly translates as “Pygmy man”, and it’s through, and in this Spirit that my artwork is created.