2023 Fall Resident Kevin Benham connects viewers
to a larger context through a common Wabaunsee County object .
Konza Bales celebrates the relationship of the Tallgrass Prairie to the Celestial Sky it lies under. The piece is composed of four one-ton bales of native prairie grasses that are placed to align with the Summer Solstice and the Winter Solstice. Cardinal North and South are also marked with bales. The location and center of the site was selected using two copper rods for divination. After the placement of the bales, the rods reacted more strongly to the four marked coordinates. The bales are located on a high ridge visible from Old K-10. – Kevin Benham
The source-material for Benham’s “riff” is Nancy Holt’s Sun Tunnels. Benham, a professor of landscape architecture at Louisiana State University, deliberately used a different material in his piece. Instead of employing concrete cylinders, Benham selected bales of prairie hay. The intent is for the work to slowly disintegrate over time, returning to the landscape. These temporary monoliths, placed in a simple arrangement, serve to reorient the viewer to the larger contexts that many forget.
K E V I N B E N H A M
Testing the boundaries of landscape architecture and materials are central to Kevin’s practice. The Louisiana State University professor installs works that put spacial qualities and temporal movement into relief. While at Volland, Kevin immersed himself in the region’s ecology, hydrology, geology and more. Visit Kevin’s website here