“Personally, this fellowship award reestablished my passion of dedicating myself to a life of creativity and sharing it with the community in which I live. The award itself is inspiring to me that others believe in the arts as an integral part of the community as much as I do. That type of community support by both individuals and organizations propels me to continue to share my interest within the community to change someone else’s life through art.”
Benjamin’s renewal process focused on the gift of dedicated time and financial resources to create contemporary sculptures in glass. He also wanted to network with other professional artists and pursue his goal of turning his love of educating students into a professorship. “The fellowship was a validation of my past efforts which renewed my creative energies to take risks and further push the limitations of my art.” Recently, Benjamin was recognized as a Rising Star in Contemporary Glass in New Jersey, published in Corning Museum of Glass’s New Glass Review 34, exhibited work in over twenty exhibitions, and selected for the collection of the Evansville Museum of Arts, History, and Science. He now serves as the Glass Studio Chair at the Indianapolis Art Center and as an adjunct professor at Herron School of Art and Design.
During his fellowship, he twice served as a visiting artist at Kent State University and attended teaching intensive workshops at Pittsburg Glass Center. The growth that he experienced during his Creative Renewal enabled him the creativity to organize the inaugural Indy Glass Month in September of 2014. Centered around the Indiana Glass Arts Alliance’s annual juried exhibition held at Gallery 924, the kickoff was hosted by the Indianapolis Art Center, and glass exhibitions were displayed at a variety of central Indiana galleries. This initial event showcased the local glass community and further inspired Benjamin along his renewal process.
2013 Rising Star in Contemporary Glass Recipient, Museum of American Glass, Wheaton Arts and Cultural Center
2011 Efroymson Contemporary Arts Fellowship Recipient, Central Indiana Community Foundation
2006 Windgate Fellowship Award Recipient, The Center for Craft, Creativity, and Design