For the past 50 years, The William Benton Museum of Art on the Storrs campus has been Connecticut’s State Art Museum. In that time it has amassed a permanent collection of more than 6,500 paintings, drawings, watercolors, prints, photographs, and sculptures, while serving as host to curated and traveling exhibitions dating from the 15th through the 21st centuries.
Exhibitions at The Benton have included works by Ansel Adams, George Bellows, Mary Cassatt, Salvador Dali, Guerrilla Girls, Winslow Homer, Käthe Kollwitz, Robert Motherwell, Norman Rockwell, Auguste Rodin, Cynthia Reeves Snow, and Frank Stella, among many others. The Museum’s array of special events includes gallery talks, campus art walks, academic and nonacademic discussions, musical performances, and family programs. — kenneth best
In honor of The Benton’s fiftieth anniversary, we’ve culled photographs of pieces from favorite visiting exhibitions.
Speak Up! Speak Out!
Bread & Puppet Theater, 2015
El Dia de Los Muertos:
Day of the Dead/Mexican Artifacts and Altars, 1998.
Cover of 1998 exhibition catalog
The Art of Gaman:
Arts and Crafts from the Japanese American Internment Camps 1942–1946, 2008
Women’s Work, Women’s Dreams:
A Century of Swedish Women’s Arts, 2009
Piece by Eva Björkström
Simple Gifts – Hands to Work and Hearts to God, 1978
A Loan Exhibition of Shaker Craftsmanship Primarily from Hancock Shaker Village
From Amazing Stories to Weird Tales:
Covering Pulp Fiction, 2010
Virgil Finlay, Cover art for Famous Fantastic Mysteries, June 1942
Bent, 1992 – yellow pine, twine, 11’ x 7’ x 8’
Installations and Drawings by Bryan Nash Gill, 1993
Women of New England:
Dress from the Industrial Age, 1850–1900, 2012
1887 Silk Bodice donated by Mrs. Fitch Cheney in 1974
A Magnificent Obsession — Sculpture from the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Foundation, 2007
The Mystical Arts of Tibet
Monks from Namyal Monastery in Ithaca, N.Y., created Mandala of Compassion as part of the Museum’s Mystical Arts of Tibet exhibition. It took an entire week to complete the sacred sand painting, which was then dismantled and the sand poured into Mirror Lake.
Barkley L. Hendricks:
Some Like It Hot, 2011
Below, find examples of pieces added to the museum’s permanent collection, one for each year from 1967 to 2016.