MICHELLE BENOIT-Willard Street Series: white under green-2015


"Willard Street Series: white under green" 2015

9'' x 9'' x 2" ( 22.9 x 22.9 x 5.1 depth cm) mixed media on machine cut reclaimed lucite, maple wood



Content is often guided by the process itself and alchemical reaction. The substance, format and methodology of the work have been fluid over the years but the intent has remained constant, to embed meaning with time, isolated, to visually see what it looks like. 

Often materials are recycled and reclaimed. Compositions are composed in relation with the size of the fragments and the ability to carry light. Collected, cut, painted, stacked, mortared and coalesced. Experimentation and intent are embedded, revealing process, reflection and structure as image. Lucite, wood, paints and mixed media are cut, assembled, adhered and re-cut. Ingrained layers and seams are exposed. Memory is encased in complexion, saturation, and matter. Color combinations are coded and symbolic of and for, past events, memory and place. I think of the results as a contemporary geologic core sample, a very personal, yet collective landscape. 

This current body of work is a remembering. A collection of memory through light and chroma. Saturation, translucency, material, pattern and form have been excavated and extracted metaphysically and physically. The painted Lucite objects are a removal and a remembering. Isolated moments are layered over, under or adjoined to amorphous events. Isolated experience, reorganized and funneled through a reductive approach. Color reconfigured, time all at once. 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              - Michelle

Artist influenced by: Luba Art, Gordon Matta-Clarke, Mark Rothko, Robert Ryman, Donald Judd, William Anastasi, Ava Hesse, Rachel Whiteread, Dorethea Rockburne



Michelle Benoit’s paintings have been exhibited in group and solo exhibitions in galleries and public institutions nationally including Artspace 64 in Manhattan, Gebert Contemporary in Scottsdale AZ, The Green Space at T.F. Green Airport Providence, The Eve Drewlowe Gallery in Iowa City, the Sarah Doyle Gallery at Brown University, The Hoxie Gallery in Westerly RI, The Chazan Gallery in Providence RI, The Grimshaw-Gudewicz Gallery in MA, the Jamestown Center for the Arts in Jamestown RI, and the New Britain Museum of American Art in New Britain CT. In addition, her work is in public and private collections including Memorial Sloan Kettering’s’ permanent collection, The University of Iowa Museum and The Swain School of Design.

Ms. Benoit is the recipient of numerous awards and honors. She was recently awarded the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts Merit Fellowship in Painting, as well as the  Berkshire Taconic A.R.T. Grant. She also received the Iowa Arts Fellowship at the University of Iowa and several other awards.

Born in Bridgewater Massachusetts she received a BFA from Rhode Island College and an MA and an MFA from the University of Iowa. She lives with her husband on a sanctuary for rescued dogs and cats. Together they are restoring a historic 18th century farmhouse in West Warwick, Rhode Island. 



2015 Hera Gallery, Wakefield, RI: Water, juried exhibition, juror: Dina Deitsch, April

2015 The Vets Gallery Space, Providence RI; Transparencies, curators Judith Tolnick Champa, Uli Brahmst: April: Invitational

2015 The New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain CT, curated by Sharon Butler, January

2015 Gebert Contemporary, Scottsdale Arizona: Invitational

2014 AS220, Providence, RI. Reading Room Gallery in the Project Space with Julia Gandrud, December

2014 The Greenpoint Gallery, Brooklyn NY. Small Works Salon Exhibition, curated by Shawn James, October

2014 Memorial Sloan Kettering, Brooklyn NY. Reflections; curated by Sarah Campbell, September 2014- September 2015: Invitational

2014 The Hoxie Gallery, Hera 40th Anniversary Exhibition. Westerly, RI: Invitational

2014 Artspace 64, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center March 2014-March 2015. NY, NY

2014 Hera Gallery, Wakefield, RI. Landscape at the edge: Contemporary views. April–May National juried show, juror; Michele L’Heureux Wheaton College, Brandeis University

2014 The Chazan Gallery at The Wheeler School. October-November 2014

2014 Green Space at T.F Green Airport. Public Art and Stipend: January 2014-April 2014. Jurors; Ellen McBreen; Wheaton College,  Victoria Lichtendorf Storm King Art Center, Sam Duket; artist

2013 RISCA Fellowship Exhibition, February 14-March 9, Jamestown Art Center, Jamestown, RI. Invitational

2004 Works on Paper: The Chazen Gallery, Providence, RI

2003 Beneath the Surface: Rock, Paper, Threads. The Grimshaw-Gudewicz Art Gallery, Fall River, MA. Bristol Community College.Invitational

2002 Emerging Artists: The Chazen Gallery, Providence, RI

2002 Juried group show: The Hera Gallery, Wakefield, RI

2000 Evolutions:Arbor Gallery, with Titus Heagins, Olabayo Olianiyi, Gek Choo Yeo. Iowa City, Iowa.Invitaional

1999 Locating Place: Collaboration with David Dunlap and Howard Rogdovan. The Byron Burford Gallery, Iowa City, IA. Invitational

1998 Regional Show: The Reservoir Space, Iowa City, IA. University of Iowa.Invitational

1998 The Home Show: The Reservoir Space, Curatorial project. Iowa City, IA. University of Iowa

1996 The Sarah Doyle Gallery: Juried painting exhibition. Providence, RI. Brown University

1996 The Native Gallery: Juried painting exhibition. Providence, RI.Invitational

1995 Bannister Gallery: Juried painting exhibition. Robert Birmelin. Providence, RI. Rhode Island College

2002 Compulsion: Courthouse Center for the Arts. West Kingstown, RI. invitational

2002 and 2003 Faculty Exhibitions: Roger Williams University, Bristol, RI



2005 Pieces of Place: Time All At Once. Bridgewater State College, The Wallace Anderson Gallery. Bridgewater, MA

2004 Michelle Benoit; New work. CCRI Knight Campus Art Gallery. Warwick, RI

2002 Courthouse Center for The Arts, with Tayo Houser; Compulsion; West Kingstown, RI.2000 Sand Drawing: Earthwork; Conimicut Point, Warwick, RI

2000 Window Wall, Light and Shadow Drawing: Warwick, RI

2000 The Closet: Installation. Warwick, RI

2000 Minimalism and Alchemy: The Eve Drewlowe Gallery. Iowa City, IA. University of Iowa

1999: Column: An Installation. The Eve Drewlowe Gallery. Iowa City, IA. University of Iowa

1999 Excavation Project: The Reservoir Space. Iowa City, IA. University of Iowa



Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation: Artist Resource Trust Grant 2013

Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, Merit Fellowship in Painting 2013

Iowa Arts Fellowship: School of Art and Art History and the Graduate College. Full Tuition and stipend award 1997- 2000

Teaching Assistantships: School of Art and Art History, The University of Iowa. Awards 1999 and 2000

Special Talent Award: Art Center, Rhode Island College. Scholarship in Fine Arts 1994, 1993, and 1992




Bluefish Painting: January 2006- September 2008, Bristol, RI. Owner andcreator of a green interior decorative painting company. Specializing in contemporary painting techniques, utilizing historic paint recipes. Responsibilities include marketing and branding, estimating project costs, color consultation, painting, client consultations

Roger Williams University: Fall 2001-summer 2008. Adjunct Professor Bristol, RI. School of Art, Architecture and Historic Preservation. Courses taught: drawing fundamentals, painting, senior studio and topics in sculpture: installation art. Coordinated and conducted slide and digital image presentations, critiques, student reviews and advisement, developed curriculmn, syllabi and all assignments. Also established the pre-college program, a summer residency for high school seniors in the visual arts

Bridgewater State College: Fall 2002-winter 2006. Visiting Lecturer in the art department, Bridgewater, MA. Courses taught: Basic drawing; Artistic modes of expression, two dimensional design and painting. Responsible for ordering all art materials for the semester for each student within the confines of the schools budget. Developed curriculum, syllabi, and assignments. Administered slide presentations, critiques, and student reviews

Have No Fear Productions: Summer 2006. Scenic Painter for the film ‘Underdog.” Armory Building, Providence, RI. Painted constructed objects and sculptures to resemble reality on the set

Fuller Museum of Art: Fall 2000-Winter 2002. Instructor: visual arts. Taught drawing classes and curated student exhibitions for adults in a continuing education environment

Office of The State Archeologist: 2000 Iowa City, IA. Intern. Researched, analyzed, and classified information. Organized, documented, and reconstructed ancient artifacts, fragments, and data in the archeology laboratory

City Arts for Youth Organization: 1994-1995.  Assistant to the Director of   Development and Operations. Saint Michaels Cathedral Providence, RI



Memorial Sloan Kettering

The University of Iowa Museum

The Swain School of Design

RI Philharmonic Orchestra

Numerous private collections



M.F.A. School of Art and Art History; Painting, Sculpture minor. The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA. May 2000

M.A. School of Art and Art History; Painting, Printmaking minor. The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA. May 1999

B.F.A. Rhode Island College, Providence, RI. Magna Cum Laude. May 1995

Swain School of Design, 1980-1982

Michelle's technique includes some of or all:  Lucite, plexiglass, gouache, flashe paint, acrylic polymer resin, acrylic paints, airbrush, golden airbrush paints, AutoCAD, CAD, cnc Router, Laser cutting, table saw, scientific leveling tables, orbital sanders