Ben Benedict

Photo of Ben Benedict

Senior Lecturer in Art, Emeritus

Scholarship/Creative Work


I teach the introductory and advanced architecture studios and a 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 design themes, I attempt to broaden and deepen my students’ understanding of architecture. Their search for creative answers to the design problems I assign brings clarity to the large issues of the field. With guidance, students seek to find their own design voices. The basses and sopranos of a full chorus emerge by the close of the semester. Late night discussions in the studio can be as useful as class time. 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. While some students eventually go on to architecture school, the larger purpose of each studio is to develop insight into the universally useful design process for students with a broad range of interests by getting them to sit down and design.