01

Artist Profile

Billy Al Bengston

b. 1934

Billy Al Bengston, the quintessential LA “bad boy,” is best known for his Chevron paintings of the 1960s. Bengston was born in Dodge City, Kansas, in 1934, and his family moved to Los Angeles in 1948, where he attended Manual Arts High School. The chevrons placed in the center of the painting, sometimes described as sergeant stripes, conjure the look and feel of heraldic imagery, reflecting militaristic overtones and a distinct male sensibility. What has been overlooked in Bengston’s art is the overt female imagery and references in his iris paintings from the Dracula series.

02

Work

Works in Our Collection

Billy Al Bengston
KA
Acrylic on plywood, 2000
14 x 14 inches
Gift of Rosamund Felsen
2003.014.001

Billy Al Bengston
Notbakelser Draculas
Acrylic on canvas, 1977
Anonymous Gift
1998.018.001

Billy Al Bengston
Untitled (from the Barcelona Portfolio)
Lithograph on Guarro paper, 1988
22 x 29 7/8 inches
Gift of Ed Moses and Family
1991.128.005

Billy Al Bengston
Untitled (from the Barcelona Portfolio)
Lithograph on Guarro paper, 1988
22 x 29 7/8 inches
Gift of Ed Moses and Family
1991.128.006

Billy Al Bengston
The Alamo
Lacquer and polyester resin on aluminum, 1969
36 x 34 inches
Gift of the Richard H. Mumper Trust
1994.093

Billy Al Bengston
Untitled
Oil on canvas, 1957
48 x 48 inches
Gift of John and Phyllis Kleinberg
2014.013.001

Billy Al Bengston
Untitled (Dracula Series)
Oil on canvas, 1959
10-1/2 x 9-1/4 inches
Gift of Ruth and Murray Gribin
2001.010.026