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Item Name: Print
Title: Prairie Duster I
Maker: Douglas Bentham
Year: 1977
Country: Canadian
Materials: lithograph, 3/60
Measurements: in frame: 73.7 cm x 86.3 cm; work: 50.8 cm x 65.4 cm
ID Number: ART 029
Legal Status: ART RENTAL


Extended Label Info: Douglas Bentham is well known for his “Constructivist” work in metal sculpture. Influenced by the abstract expressionist sculptors David Smith and Anthony Caro, Bentham uses found materials and industrial scrap metal to create simplified and geometric forms. A collector of old movie posters, ethnic Saskatchewan furniture, folk art, and handmade toys, Bentham says that his art is inspired by his experiences in Saskatchewan: “by landscape, by architecture, by urban spaces and, always, by light—by whatever can infuse an object with its own spirit.” His two dimensional artworks, such as this lithographic print “Prairie Duster I”, have a similar quality to his sculptures. Here, a black rectangular shape floats in a swirl of lines over a green background, resembling a low flying plane, or “crop duster” spraying a field. Douglas Bentham R.C.A. (1947) was born in Rosetown, Saskatchewan, and moved to Saskatoon as a teen in 1959. After he earned his BFA in painting from the University of Saskatchewan (1969), Bentham set up his studio, and began working in sculpture. He received early recognition when his artwork was featured in a national travelling exhibition organised by the Art Gallery of York University (1975), and shortly after, was elected into the Royal Canadian Academy (1976). A strong member of the local arts community in Saskatoon, Bentham returned to the University of Saskatchewan as a mature artist, and earned an MFA in Sculpture (1989). Over his long career, Bentham’s artwork has been featured in hundreds of solo and group exhibitions across Canada, and is held in numerous public collections. His commissions include sculptures for Innovation Place in Saskatoon; the National Science Library (now the Canada Institute for Scientific and Technical Information) in Ottawa; and the Government of Canada building in Calgary. Bentham’s current studio is in central Saskatchewan, near Dundurn and Saskatoon. In 1981, The Canada Council recognized Bentham’s work with the Lynch-Staunton Award.