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Heather Benning

Curriculum Vitae // Select Press

THE DOLLHOUSE

   

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Dusk #1, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Dusk #2, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Dusk #3, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Living Room Reflection, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Under the Stairs Reflection, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Kitchen Reflection #1, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Rainbow, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Front, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Upstairs Foyer, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Kitchen Reflection #2, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Kitchen Sideboard, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Colander, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Kitchen Reflection #3, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Blue Bedroom #1, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Blue Bedroom #2, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: "I'm Alone", 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Detail Telephone, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Living Room, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: How to Sell by Telephone, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Front Door, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Skates Reflection, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Through the Kitchen Window, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Summer Storm, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Blue Night #1, 2011, Digital C-print, 20 x 30"

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Blue Night #2, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Night, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Living Room Night, 2011, Kodak Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Green Bedroom Night, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Upstairs Foyer Night, 2011, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 20 x 30" (detail)

Heather Benning

BOOK - Heather Benning: the dollhouse, 2012, hardcover book, 55 pages, 1st edition of 50, signed

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Documentary (1), 2012, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 16 x 21.25" (detail)

Heather Bennin

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Documentary (2), 2012, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 16 x 21.25" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Documentary (3), 2012, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 16 x 21.25" (detail)

Heather Benning

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Documentary (4), 2012, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, 16 x 21.25" (detail)

 

 
THE DEATH OF THE DOLLHOUSE  

Heather Benning: The Death of the Dollhouse: Living Room, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print,(detail)

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Night #1, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, (detail)

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Night #2, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, (detail)

Heather Benning: The Dollhouse: Night #3, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print, (detail)

Heather Benning: The Death of Dollhouse: Fire #1, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print

Heather Benning: The Death of Dollhouse: Fire #2, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print

Heather Benning: The Death of Dollhouse: Fire #3, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print

Heather Benning: The Death of Dollhouse: Fire #4, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print

Heather Benning: The Death of Dollhouse: Fire #5, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print

Heather Benning: The Death of Dollhouse: Fire #6, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print

Heather Benning: The Death of Dollhouse: Fire #7, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print

Heather Benning: The Death of Dollhouse: Fire #8, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print

Heather Benning: The Death of Dollhouse: Fire #9, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print

Heather Benning: The Death of Dollhouse: Fire #10, 2013, Kodak Endura Digital C-print

 

The Dollhouse is a suite of 29 photographs that document the completed transformation of an abandoned farmhouse into a life-sized dollhouse. The photographs reveal a degraded wooden house in a flat empty field in rural Manitoba. Around the back of the house, an entire wall has been replaced with Plexiglas, revealing rooms that have been fully restored and furnished with decor dating from around the time the house was abandoned in 1968. The contrast in the exterior and interior speak to themes surrounding the passage of time, childhood play, memory, reclamation and nostalgia. The Dollhouse delves deeply into exploring the act of dwelling and engaging with a strong sense of place.

Heather Benning created The Dollhouse while serving as artist-in-residence in Redvers, Saskatchewan, about 30 kilometres west of the house near Sinclair, Manitoba. The installation took nearly 18 months to complete.

In 2012, the artist deemed the foundation of the house to be unsafe and made the difficult decision that the project was at an end. Benning chose to burn down the house on March 21, 2013 -- an economical and fitting end for a Prairie farm building that was no longer safe and of use. An image of the burn was featured on the front page of the National Post.

Heather Benning was born in Humboldt, Saskatchewan in 1980 and now lives and works in rural Saskatchewan and Glasgow, Scotland. She began her formal studies in fine arts at the University of Regina, and completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 2004, and a Master of Sculpture at Edinburgh College of Art in 2009. Between her degrees, Benning returned to Saskatchewan, where she completed several large-scale, site-specific installations. She has had numerous solo and group shows throughout Canada (Nova Scotia, Manitoba and Saskatchewan) and abroad (Germany, Scotland, England and France). Heather’s work has been reviewed in Canadian Art magazine (Spring 2005, 2011), Sculpture magazine (Spring 2008), Galleries West (2009), Espace (Winter 2009/2010) and Uppercase Magazine (Issue 8). Benning recently received a Professional Development Grant from the Canada Council for the Arts (Summer 2009) and was nominated for the Sobey Art Award long list in 2010.

 

Exhibitions

___

"Kiln Hand" - The culmination of a Norfolk Arts Centre Artist Residency, located at 1823 Windham Road 7, Vanessa, Ontario.

View images from the Opening Reception.

Recent press on "Kil(n) Hand" - Canadian Art Magazine, Simcoe Reformer

 

"Work hard, be nice" Estevan Art Gallery & Museum, Saskatchewan
Sept 11 - Oct 24, 2014
Reception: Thurs, Sept 11, 7pm

Exhibition essay by curator, Alex King

 

UPCOMING

Feature exhibition Oct 2014 JOHN MICHAEL KOHLER ARTS CENTER in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.

Heather Benning's "The Field Doll" sculpture + photographs, as well as photographs from "The Dollhouse" and "The Death of the Dollhouse" will be on exhibition.

 

CONTINUING

- Touring exhibition of new sculpture - Art Gallery of Grande Prairie & Mendel Art Gallery: http://www.theymadeadaybeadayhere.ca/heather-benning/

- Selected works from Heather Benning's "The Dollhouse" featured "Creative Play: The Saskatchewan Arts Board’s 65th Anniversary Touring Exhibition." Curated by visual artist Jennifer McRorie, the exhibition features new acquisitions from the Permanent Collection. Through a partnership with the Organization of Saskatchewan Arts Councils (OSAC), it is touring 12 communities during the Arts Board’s anniversary year, including North Battleford, Redvers, Biggar, Regina, Saskatoon, Shaunavon, Regina Beach, La Ronge, Leader, Melfort, Prince Albert and Outlook. (Guide)

Select Press

PRINT

NationalPost
 
PNReview
 
SculptureMagazine
Tristin Hopper: "World’s largest dollhouse gutted in fire lit by artist who created it." National Post. April 9, 2013   Sheri Benning: "Dollhouse." PN Review. July - August 2008.   Naomi Potter: "Sinclair, Canada - Heather Benning - Highway 2." Sculpture Magazine. Spring 2008.
FeminaMagazine   Era 21   Black Flash
"Building a Doll's House." Femina. Aug 2008.   "Playscapes." ERA21
More on Architecture!
#03 2013 (Czech Republic)
  “The Death of the Dollhouse: Front Smoke” Detail. BlackFlash
Magazine, Issue 30.2, 2013
LocationMagazine
 
Irish Mae: "Concepts We Crave." Location Magazine. 2008.   Room Magazine 36.4: "A Progressive Lens." Edited by Amy McCall & Lorrie Miller.

   

ONLINE

Heather Benning
Beth McEachen: "Breaking and Entering: Haunted Houses." Canadian Art Magazine. Mar 17, 2011.

Canadian Art
Leah Sandals: "Supersizing Prairie Gothic: The Art of Heather Benning." Canadian Art Magazine. Aug 8, 2014.

Priscilla Frank: "Artist Turns Abandoned Building Into A Life-Size Dollhouse... Then Burns It Down." Huffington Post Arts and Culture. Aug 26, 2014

- Carol Steedman: "The work of many hands on a tabacco farm." Brantford Expositor. Sept 19, 2014
- "Three New Exhibitions at EAGM." Estevan Lifestyles. Sept 18, 2014
- Priscilla Frank: "Artist Turns Abandoned Building Into A Life-Size Dollhouse... Then Burns It Down." Huffington Post Arts and Culture. Aug 26, 2014
- Leah Sandals: "Supersizing Prairie Gothic: The Art of Heather Benning." Canadian Art Magazine. Aug 8, 2014
- Sarah Doktor: "Art installation reflects on tobacco farming culture." Simcoe Reformer. Aug 8, 2014 (online)
- Katie Starr: "Helping Hands." Norfolk News. Aug 16, 2014. (online)
- Sarah Doktor: "Inaugural artist residency program begins at Norfolk Arts Centre." Simcoe Reformer. Jan 20, 2014 (online)
- Alison Cooley: "They Made A Day Be A Day Here: Prairie Positive." Canadian Art. Jan 16, 2014 (online)
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John Shelling: "Artists amaze in little show on Prairies." The Starphoenix. Oct 2, 2013 (print/online)
- Jené Gutierrez: "Heather Benning’s Life-Size Dollhouse
." Beautiful/Decay. July 30, 2013 (online)
- Keerthana Jagadeesh: "Abandoned Prairie Farm Transformed into Life-Sized Dollhouse." PSFK. July 3, 2013. (online)
- Alison Nastasi: "10 Artists Who Destroyed Their Own Work." Flavorwire. June 1, 2013
(online)
- Sarah Bijlsma: "Huge Toys." Take a Charcoal. May 19, 2013 (online)
- Carol Off and Jeff Douglas: "Dollhouse Fire" segment. As It Happens, Part Three, CBC Radio. April 11, 2013 (audio)
- Marilyn Maki, Radio Noon, CBC Manitoba. April 11, 2013 (audio)
- Andrea Ratuski: "Artist burns her life-sized dollhouse to the ground." Scene, CBC Manitoba. April 11, 2013 (online)
- Alison Nastasi: "Abandoned Spaces Reclaimed by Art." Flavorwire. Sept 17, 2012 (online)
- "Abandoned House Turned Gigantic Dollhouse by Heather Benning." Juxtapoz Magazine. July 5, 2012 (online)
- Richard Hartley-Parkinson: "Ever wished you could live like Barbie? Artist turns derelict building into life-size dolls house with huge wall of glass." Daily Mail UK. June 13, 2012 (online)

- Beth McEachen: "Breaking and Entering: Haunted Houses." Canadian Art. March 17, 2011 (online)
- "Abandoned farmhouse becomes life-sized dollhouse." CBC News. June 11, 2007 (online)