“Two aspects in his work are of deciding importance: spontaneity and improvisation.”
Courtesy of the artist.
The sculptor and painter Benno Werth, who lives and works in Aachen, can look back on a more than 60 year period of creativity. His immense art work is distinguished by an enormous complexity: there are paintings and coloured glass windows, wooden and stone sculptures, metal works, drawings showing privacy in contrast with designs of landscapes, places, fountains, and buildings covering the field of hospitals and churches. At present, Benno Werth creates mainly metal sculptures, but he also paints.
Two aspects in his work are of deciding importance: spontaneity and improvisation. His bronze sculptures seem to be well calculated and originate from improvisation. Normally a clay-model is the first step in the production process, however, not with Benno Werth, who directly produces a negative casting form into which he then pours the liquid metal. This is a unique technical procedure which Benno Werth developed in 1962 and which allows him to work and design in a more direct manner. So objects of delicate metal-structure have been constructed which represent both figurative and architectonic conceptions. Changing the solid metal body into light and floating and multiplying consistency is an artistic process which has been developed parallel to the gestural abstract painting and thus has given a new dimension to the sculpture. Archaic, expressive elements reminders of an expressionistic Gothic characterize Benno Werth’s sculptures.
Benno Werth paints with spontaneity, and each brush stroke reveals to him the character and the effect of the colours. Abstract worlds appear on his canvas, he makes colours vibrate and effect in rich nuances. He experiments with contrasts, his pictures show depth, sometimes figures and female bodies and sometimes even landscapes. Apart from abstract compositions in his paintings Benno Werth occupies himself again and again with the subject of the female body. Sometimes his latest pictures show the total figure instead of former times’ torsos and body fragments. Here Benno Werth shows us total new paths in his paintings.
Benno Werth sees in his artistic design not only a problem of the shape but also one of the content. There are symbolic and essential elements in forms going up and staying in the horizontal, colours like yellow, red and blue. Every time there is the active going upwards principle and the passive receiving principle, the male and the female principle that he explains and by making them approach thus a whole is created. So the principle of creating and receiving becomes visible in every picture and in every sculpture. Benno Werth is an artist whose pictures reveal more than a single form.