Richard Benson

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Richard Benson
Richard Mead Atwater Benson

(1943-11-08)November 8, 1943
DiedJune 22, 2017(2017-06-22) (aged 73)
Providence, Rhode Island, U.S.
Alma materBrown University

Richard Mead Atwater Benson (November 8, 1943 – June 22, 2017)[1] was an American photographer, printer, and educator who utilized photographic processing techniques of the past and present.


Born in Newport, Rhode Island, Benson began teaching photography at Yale University in 1979 and was dean of the Yale School of Art from 1996 to 2006.[2] Benson had a broad range of interests in the photographic print: silver, platinum, palladium, and ink. Working in these different mediums, sometimes learning forgotten crafts and sometimes creating new ones, by the 1970s he was convinced that ink and the modern photo offset press – with its ability to make multiple passes that build an image from multiple layers of ink – possessed a potential for photographic rendition beyond anything else previously known. By the 1990s he began working on the relationship between the computer and traditional photographic imagery, and applied the lessons from this in the production of long-run offset books of work by different photographers, in both black and white and color.


  • Photographs from the Collection of the Gilman Paper Company, White Oak Press, 1985 (Benson made multiple halftone films from each photograph, exposed those films to plates, and printed the plates on a single-color sheet-fed offset printing press.)
  • Lay This Laurel, Eakins Press, 1973, co-authored with Lincoln Kirstein
  • A Maritime Album, The Mariners’ Museum, Newport News, Virginia, 1997 co-authored with photographer John Szarkowski.
  • A Yale Album, Yale University Press, 2001
  • The Printed Picture, Museum of Modern Art, 2008



  1. ^ Sandomir, Richard (June 27, 2017). "Richard Benson, Photographer and Printer, Dies at 73". The New York Times. Retrieved June 28, 2017.
  2. ^ Richard Benson on the Yale University School of Art website
  3. ^ "John Simon Guggenheim Foundation". Retrieved 2019-01-01.
  4. ^ "Richard Benson - MacArthur Foundation". Retrieved 2019-01-01.

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