Ben Benedict

Senior Lecturer

Spencer Studio Art


B.A. Yale University (1973)
M.Arch. Yale University (1976)

Areas of Expertise

I teach the introductory architecture studio and a new studio emphasizing sustainable design strategies. (I’m also a practicing architect.) By concentrating on design problems and spending some time looking at how specific well-known buildings relate to basic design themes, I attempt to broaden and deepen my student’s understanding of architecture. Their search for creative answers to the design problems I assign brings clarity to the large issues of the field. With some guidance, students seek to find their own design voices. (The basses and sopranos of a full chorus emerge by the close of the semester.) Every problem ends with a group review of the class’s work led by a jury of design professionals. The cauldron of public review brings intensity to the studio that reveals both the flaws and the genius of each student’s scheme. (The late night discussions that accompany preparation for the design reviews can be as useful as the formal teaching process itself.) While several students from each class eventually go on to architecture school, the larger purpose of each studio is to develop insight into architectural issues for students with a broad range of interests by getting them to sit down and design.