2007-09-20 / Upcoming Events

Monument carver's work discussed by former student

The Friends of the Jamestown Library will host a special program on Thursday, September 27, at 7 p.m. in the Sydney L. Wright Museum room. The program "John Howard Benson: the Artist, the Scholar and the Teacher, 1901 - 1956," is an illustrated talk given by Johannes H. von Gumppenberg.

In 1927, John Benson re-opened the John Stevens Shop at its 18th century site on Thames Street in Newport and won his chief renown as a carver of monument lettering. In addition to being a master carver, Benson was a distinguished teacher of the principles and the techniques of writing well - that is, of "Handwriting Reform" and as such, von Gumppenberg believes Benson made himself available to us all. John Benson's published works, by their thoroughness and clarity, will lead anyone who wishes to be his student, to understanding and skill. What von Gumppenberg has learned and what others may learn from John Benson, the accomplished artist-scholar, is the subject of this talk.

The presenter, von Gumppenberg, was born in Germany in 1931 and came to the United States in 1949. He studied illustration at Rhode Island School of Design and painting in Munich and at Yale where he received an MFA in 1962. He has taught at the University of Illinois, for several years as head of Basic Design and as department chairman at Kalamazoo College in Michigan. The range of his work includes the rational emphasis of volume and space perception in pen and ink drawings. Von Gumppenberg and his wife, Janet, have lived in Jamestown since 1996.

Refreshments will be served. For more information, call the library at 423-7280.

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