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New sculpture graces Arkansas Tech’s campus



Russellville, Arkansas – At Arkansas Tech University (ATU), a brand-new 17-foot-long oak log sculpture has been placed on the south side of Witherspoon Hall.

Julie Benda was the sculpture’s creator. She is an artist-in-residence at ATU under the 2024 Windgate Foundation. Benda works in print, sculpture, and public art in addition to being a writer, illustrator, and visual artist.

Michigan native Benda has appeared in McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, MN Original, Make MN Magazine, and Hyperallergic.

She is the recipient of the Jerome/MCBA Mentorship, the Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative Grant, and the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council Next Step Grant.

A donation from the Windgate Foundation enables ATU’s artist-in-residence initiative.

With financial assistance from the Windgate Foundation, Arkansas Tech has been able to purchase equipment for its nursing students, create a need-based scholarship fund, create a summer professional development program for K–12 art teachers, and develop improved opportunities for ATU graduates to attend medical school.

Benda is Arkansas Tech’s sixth artist in residence in its history.

Her predecessors were Haylee Bolinger (spring 2023), Andrew Malczewski (spring 2022), Jade Hoyer (fall 2021), Tiffany Black (spring 2020), and Manami Ishimura (spring 2019).






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