- Office: MOL 112
Dr. Benson is Full Professor in the Fine Arts Department, where he teaches primarily sculpture and drawing. He earned a BFA in Art Education (1975), a Diploma in Art Education (1979), and an MFA (1979) in sculpture from Concordia University. He came to teach at Bishop’s in 1979. After a period of teaching he returned to Concordia and earned a PhD in Art Education (1999). His interests are in both creative work in studio and scholarly activity in art education. Dr. Benson exhibits his work in galleries locally, nationally, and internationally.
Currently Dr. Benson is preparing for an exhibition entitled “Lot’s Wife” focusing on a series of figurative sculptures of various sizes. The larger pieces are enlargements of the smaller ones. While in production, he came to see that the process of enlarging a small maquette by traditional means allows for unforeseen creative possibilities. There is often significant opportunity to make subtle changes to the enlargement that were not apparent in its smaller version. Creative choices are involved at both the maquette and enlarged stages of creating the series. He sees himself as an artist who is a subordinate worker in a collective process. From this perspective, Dr. Benson is examining what creative opportunities, if any, a student might have if given the task of enlarging one of his maquettes. He has begun to research the work of other artists who have relied on apprentices.
Dr. Benson is interested in examining the visual evidence of any variations between some of Henry Moore’s maquettes and the enlargements done by Moore’s apprentices. This study is intended to determine the degree of variation between Moore’s maquettes and their enlarged versions with the aim of coming to understand the degree of individual creative initiative Moore permitted his apprentices in the enlarging process. In doing so, Dr. Benson hopes to come to a better understanding of the relationship between the artist and the apprentice which will inform the context of the relationship between himself and his students (the focus of his PhD dissertation). He intends to employ a student apprentice, with a view to understanding the creative parameters of the relationship with his student/apprentice in the task of enlarging several of his pieces for the exhibition entitled “Lot’s Wife.”
B.A. (Bishop’s), M.F.A. (UQAM), Ph.D.(Concordia)
Dr. Millington is Professor in the Department of Fine Arts and the School of Education, where he teaches primarily drawing, painting, collage; and the methods for the teaching of the arts to aspiring teachers. In 1988, he earned a BA (Fine Arts) from Bishop’s University, wherein his ongoing love for learning and teaching was instilled. In 1990, he earned an MFA from the Université du Québec à Montréal, with a specialization in drawing and painting. After many years of teaching at Dawson College, Bishop’s University, and Champlain College, as well as exhibiting as a professional artist, Millington managed to synthesize these two passions and earned a Ph.D in Art Education from Concordia University in 2000. He joined Bishop’s as a full-time faculty member in 2006. His interests are in the ongoing development of visual research in the studio and an ongoing examination of how students learn in the art studio environment.
Dr. Millington’s Ph.D. work sought to examine how students come to understand their art making processes in the studio. The resulting doctoral dissertation looked at a means of linking both modes of knowing employed in studio classroom, the visual and the verbal, chiefly through the encouragement and understanding of metaphorical thought processes. This approach allowed for meaningful connections between the student’s visual explorations and other fields of study, other areas of personal import. Dr. Millington’s present work continues to focus on pedagogical strategies which enhance the studio art learning environment.
Dr. Millington also continues to conduct ongoing visual research and to actively exhibit his work in galleries and museums throughout Quebec and farther afield. His most recent work, at times politically minded and at times deeply personal, draws stimulus from the Dada artists: Marcel Duchamp, Kurt Schwitters, Max Ernst and Francis Picabia. True to his teaching approach, Dr. Millington encourages an open ended metaphorical readings of his assemblage/ paintings. Currently Dr. Millington is curating an exhibition of the Quebec artist Lorraine Benic. He also currently sits on the Conseil des Arts Visuels for the City of Sherbrooke.