Nick Benson is our guest in this episode. He is an extraordinary artist and 8th generation stone carver, as well as the owner and creative director of the John Stevens Shop in Newport. The John Stevens stone carving business has been in existence since 1705. It is one of the oldest continuously operating businesses in the United States.
Nick has personally carved some of America’s most treasured monuments, from the awesome WW2 monument in Washington, D.C., to the most humble of headstones for departed loved ones. In 2007, Nicholas Benson was awarded the National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship and in 2010 he was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. We chat with Nick about his craft, what it is like to work on such high-profile projects, and what’s next for the Johns Stevens Shop. Listen in!