Visionary multi-disciplinary and automotive artist Benjamin Kern has been a critical organizer in Marion County’s local arts landscape for decades. He is perhaps best known for his pivotal role as cooperative gallery & events programmer at downtown Marion’s The Guild — a collaborative artists’ co-working & gallery space right on Main Street.

Automotive Artist & Community Arts Organizer


Benjamin “Ben” Kern is a beloved Marion County multidisciplinary and automotive artist, and is a familiar face through his outsized organizing role as gallery & workshop coordinator at Downtown Marion’s The Guild Fine Arts & Hand Crafts — an innovative artist-run cooperative studio & gallery space. Ben has been an artist his entire life — with a special interest in complex illustrations of cars; while he trained at both OSU-Marion & Columbus College of Arts & Designs, those arts programs, at the time, were hyper-focused on so-called “fine” art; and were markedly less friendly towards artists working in commercial illustration. Thus, Ben took an unconventional path towards his vocation as an artist: after working for decades in a Marion County factory and working to find ways to nourish his creative callings on the side — including a stint working at Marion’s Carousel & Carvings as an illustrator, detailer, & carousel restoration artist! — Ben moved into a full-time role with The Guild, helping to coordinate and organize the downtown Marion cultural coordinator’s vibrant arts & culture scene. Ben is passionate about making the arts — and creative arts livelihoods — accessible to working-class communities in Marion; and is known locally as a humble guru & guide on the creative process, a true leader in our county’s local arts revitalization!


The Guild Fine Arts & Hand Crafts: 146 W. Center Street || Marion, Ohio 43302 || 740.382.6875 || Hours: T-F, 10am-6pm + S, 10am-3pm || Please contact the Guild in advance for potentially modified studio/gallery open hours & expectations during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Reach out to Ben or commission a work at! Please note that Ben currently has up to a 3-month backlog for commissioned work, so please be patient!

Contact The Guild Fine Arts & Hand Crafts for gallery hours, commissions, lessons, or workshops at:


Commercial Illustration; Automotive Illustration & Design; Painting; Sculptural Work; Historic Restoration // Repairs // Casting; Architectural Sculpture; Arts Organizing; Arts Classes & Workshops; Creative Process Coaching; Painting/Drawing Lessons


Multidisciplinary Arts; Automotive Arts; Illustration; Historic Restoration; Casting; Architectural Sculpture