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 Ben Abril  (1923 - 1995)

About: Ben Abril


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Lived/Active: California      Known for: historical sites, landscape, structure

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Ben's early work
My wife and I have an original Ben Abril watercolor of an old train station in San Anita. My mother-in-law purchased it while working with Ben in the late 1950s, as a gift for her mother. We had the painting framed years ago, and have truly enjoyed it. Scott

Paula Ruiz White

Ben Abril
He was my great-uncle. Well, better put my grandmother and his mother were sisters.My grandmother is still alive but untfortunately Sarah Abril died a while back.


If anyone knows his family background let me know.My father was Jose Abril,His mother was Catalina he had many bothers and sisters most of them living in the Los Angeles area around the time Ben would have been born.I myself was born in Lynwood in 1953,I had cousins that would be like my uncles cause they were so much older than myself.The last name is not a popular name that's why I'd be interested to know.My father died when I was 2 years old so we lost most of the history that went along with him,I love to know if he could of been a relative.My Mother says my father had a talent for painting and very artistic and so so I for that fact.I see Lori Abril has a posting and you seem like you knew Ben.Were you related?Do you know anything about his family?Did he have children and their names,any info would be greatly appriciated.Thanks

Lori Abril

Ben's Character - Heart of Gold
Ben was the sweetest, funniest, and most unique person I have ever known. He always enjoyed helping people--from his friends, neighbors, and co-workers, to the homeless man on the street who asked for spare change. He never turned anyone down. I remember he once bought a meal for a man who was too proud to ask for money--and I'm sure it was just one of many meals he purchased for those who were down on their luck. He was just a beautiful person--and so funny! What a character! The "Ben" stories are just too numerous to recount here. My college application essay was all about "Ben." To this day, I'm convinced that essay is what got me admitted to Occidental College. Once, when I was young, he came home from work one day, and when I asked him how his day went, he nonchalantly said: "I had lunch on Tyrone Power's grave." He had been at the cemetery in his work as an L.A. County architect when he spotted Tyrone's grave. As it was lunchtime, he decided to sit down with his brown bag and enjoy the "peaceful atmosphere." He said he hated to leave and go back to his desk. Of course, we were still laughing about that incident years later, but, that was the thing about Ben--he savored every moment, every new experience, every chance to commune with nature--and it really showed in his paintings. And, if you haven't guessed by now, this precious man was my best friend and my dad.

Theresa Ackerson

painting of landscape
I found this artist at a sale in Jacksonville, Oregon. Have been interested in his work ever since. From the comments here, I gather he was a very down to earth person! Anyone else out there know any tidbits about him? Thanks, Theresa

Chris Crawford

Ben's work
Jeri's comments about Ben Abril brought back a flood of memories about the man and his work. He was always gracious, down to Earth and easy to talk with. We have several of his oils, and have admired so much of his work over the years and various shows we attended. I have to say that my personal favorite was of the old Green Hotel in Pasadena, which was on display at the now-closed White Gallery on Colorado Blvd.

jeri mccarty

Ben's final watercolor
I have the gift of Ben's last watercolor which I received from him personally when he worked with my father as an architect. The painting was given to me because it displays horses in a final turn of a race. The #3 horse is in the lead and that was my mother's favorite number when she bet on horses. My mother was engaged to a horse jockey and the sport never left, just the jockey. I talked to Ben just 3 weeks before he died and even though he worked with my dad and they parted over 20 years, Ben always took time to talk to me, even after my father died. Ben had a painting in his backyard gallery that was a fish lying on a newspaper. To this day that was my favorite painting he ever produced. I wish I knew where it was today.

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