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John Benvenuto

1315 Creighton Avenue
Dayton, OH 45420-1931, U.S.A.
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Phone: 937.238.0994

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STRING THEORY: Spaces To Believe In
Artist’s Statement by John Benvenuto
An essence of my sculpture installations is to create an architecture, site-specific, that is seductive spatially in its shifting and destabilized boundaries. I want to give you spaces for your self to migrate into architecture, space, materiality. This series of works of illusionist interior spaces and sites is chameleon-like in its ability to reflect or embody visitors’ memory, fantasy, longing. In contemporary physics, string theory posits simultaneous galaxies, and searches for a unified explanation of forces. In my string-equivalence structures I evoke as many realms as there are visitors and provoke a union of body and space.
The polychrome masons line and light rope is a device to prompt visitors into acts of completion. I disrobe the opaque, de-materialize plank, plaster and brick to reveal the structures that we work and live in. By limning edge, plane or mass in string or rope and/or the skeletal wood framing —architecture and its materiality is stripped-down into essence, a state in which the viewer and his/her experience becomes the subject.
The string and rope exists on literal and metaphoric levels: proscenium curtain; lines of affinity; ties that bind; representing plane and mass; lines of stress/support. These lines suggest permeability and paths for transit. By opening-up mass, room is made for the visitor to move in(to).
 What was floor, wall, ceiling can be entered and exited simultaneously. To provoke the rethinking of assumptions about living-in-space, I at times disarrange architecture: a wall becomes ‘floor,’ a ceiling functions as ‘wall.’ In my site-specific installations the interplay between gallery planes of wall/floor/ceiling and the sculptures’ planes offers further explorations of body and sensation in space. While disoriented at first, the visitor’s body and imagination will determinedly make a new sense of these spaces, creating personal sites of meaning and harmony. In the inhabitant/architect is the confluence of the architectural interior and self’s inner construction.
“Whatever we believe in, we create a space there.”

Montien Boonma, Thai sculptor




SHOWS (partial listing)
South Carolina Governors School for the Arts and Humanities, Greenville, SC., String Theory:  Mass Into Line, Plane." 2010 (solo)
Washington and Jefferson College, Washington PA., "String Theory: Closed Loops in Architecture," 2010
Art Academy of Cincinnati,Cincinnati, OH., Fringe Festival/Visual Fringe, 2009
Sinclair Community College,Dayton, OH., "String Theory: Line of Sight" 2008
South Bend Regional Museum of Art,South Bend, IN., "String Theory: Ostinado" 2008 
Springfield Museum of Art, Springfield,OH., "Ohio Art League Spring Juried Exhibition," 2008 
I-Park, East Haddam, CT., "Ziggurat Suture" (outdoor installation), 2007 
The Carnegie, Covington, KY., “String Theory: Riff and Limn,” 2007
Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit, Detroit, MI., “All Media Exhibition,” 2007
Rosewood Gallery, Kettering, OH. “20th Anniversary Invitational” 2007
Fitton Center for the Creative Arts, Hamilton, OH. (three-person) “String Theory: Transport” 2006
            Springfield Museum of Art, Springfield, OH. (two-person), “String Theory: Spaces to Believe In” 2006
            Newport Art Museum, Newport RI., “Ourchitecture,” 2005
Indianapolis Art Center, Indianapolis, IN. (two-person) “ReUse” upcoming June-August 2005
FE Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA., “Fear: Real or Imagined?,” 2005
Dayton Visual Artists Center, Dayton, OH. (three-person), “WorkArt” 2004
Stone Quarry Hill Art Park, Cazenovia, N.Y. outdoor installation: “Light and Landscape” July-October 2004
Gallery Beshart, Montclair, N.J., “Recent Works on Paper” 2004
SPACES, Cleveland, OH, installation: “Accretion Wall, an Inter-active Installation”, March, 2003
Roy G. BIV Gallery, Columbus, OH (two-person), “Recent Works” 2003
The Dairy Barn Art Center, Athens, OH, “Move It!” 2002
Three Rivers Arts Festival Juried Exhibition, Pittsburgh, PA, 2002
ARC Gallery “National Exhibition,” Chicago, IL, 2001
Rosewood Gallery, Dayton, OH (two-person), 2001
Hudson Walker Gallery, Provincetown, MA, 2000Touchstone Gallery, Washington, D.C., 1996
Popular Art Center, Ramallah, Occupied West Bank (solo), 1994
University of the District of Columbia, Installation: “Refugee Tent,” 1993
Old Ramallah Gallery, Ramallah, Occupied West Bank, (solo), 1988
Hudson Walker Gallery, Provincetown, Massachusetts (two-person), 1983
Twelve Sculptors Gallery, New York City, 1980
Amarillo Competition, Amarillo, Texas, 1977
Jonson Gallery, Albuquerque, New Mexico (solo), 1974
            Museum of Albuquerque, Albuquerque, New Mexico, “Introductions ‘73" 1973
Museum of New Mexico, Santa Fe, New Mexico,” New Mexico Fine Arts Biennial” 1973
Kravetz Gallery, Rochester, New York, 1971
University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama (solo), 1971
U.S., Jordan, Palestine.
Book cover for We Have Gone to the Beach, by Cynthia Huntington. Maine: Alice James Press, 1996.
Book cover for Witnessing, by Carolyn Maisel. Colorado: L'Epervier Press, 1978.
Portfolio of work in Puerto del Sol, New Mexico, spring, 1974
Montgomery County Arts & Cultural District visual Arts Fellowship, 2008
Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award, 2007
Artists’ Enclave at I-Park, East Haddam, CT., 2007, Residency
Montgomery County Arts & Cultural District Visual Artist Fellowship , 2004
Stone Quarry Hill Art Park, Cazenovia, N.Y., 2004, Residency
Fine Arts Work Center, Provincetown, Massachusetts, 1980, Residency
Hotchkiss Workshop Scholarship, 1971
International Sculpture Center
Springfield Museum of Art
Ohio Arts Education Association