Fletcher Benton was born in Jackson, Ohio in 1931. He began working within the arts as a sign painter, opening his first shop at the age of 14, although his interest in creating artwork started at a much earlier age. From childhood through his years enrolled at Miami University, Ohio, Benton generally resided in his home state of Ohio, moving to San Francisco after receiving his B.F.A. degree in 1956. He then spent several years venturing around Northern and Western Europe as well as New York City. Subsequent to his return in 1961, Benton pursued a career working as an artist, educator, and building on his work as a painter, became a pioneer in the bourgeoning field of kinetic sculpture.
While developing his career as a sculptor, Benton taught at institutions such as the California College of Arts and Crafts ( 1959), the San Francisco Art Institute ( 1966-67), and the California State University, San Jose ( 1967-86). Benton’s first solo exhibition was at Gump’s Gallery in San Francisco, CA, in the late 1950's; it would be the first in a list of many exhibitions, including museums and galleries all over the globe. In 1979, he received an Award for Distinguished Service to the Arts from the American Academy of Arts and Letters in New York. Other significant honors succeed this initial recognition, with the International Sculpture Center Lifetime Achievement Award being the most recent addition.
Throughout his career, Fletcher Benton has continued to establish himself as a contemporary artist. The San Francisco Bay Area has become Benton’s permanent residence, and he continues to work and live between San Francisco and neighboring Napa, CA with his wife, Bobbie Benton.
"The International Sculpture Center Lifetime Achievement award
is an honor like no other. I'm extremely proud to be presented
with this lifetime achievement. It is especially gratifying
to be listed with all the outstanding sculptors in the world
who have been previous recipients.
- Fletcher Benton
View Benton's Website
Fletcher Benton: Geometric Sculpture in Equilibrium
- originally appearing in Sculpture magazine (June 2004).
Review: Benton at the Tasenda Gallery, Los Angeles
originally appearing in Sculpture magazine (June 2001).
|Photo Credits (from top to bottom): Steel Watercolor: 4 Triangles,
1991, painted steel, 156 x 65 x 70 inches. Photography by M. Lee Fatherree. Four Pole Pieces, 1990, painted steel, H: 24 feet. Photography by Andre Emmerich.
Steel Watercolor: Balanced/Unbalanced Stairs, 1994, stainless steel, 35 x 12 x 22 inches. Photography by Roger Paperno.