Based in: London
An award-winning artist, Helena Benz creates painting, photography and print inspired by the abstract forms, colours, and details of the urban landscape and built environment.
Helena studied at the Slade School of Fine Art and has taken part in exhibitions and projects both in the UK and internationally. She lives and works in London.
“Inspired by early Modernist avant-garde painting, I investigate cities and architecture through the experience of wandering. Informed by these explorations, geometric forms, illusory perspective and bold use of colour are used to create intricate and abstract images".
Helena was Director of the Undergraduate Fine Art Programme at the University of Nottingham from 2006-12 and has taught at a number of higher education institutions in the UK and US. She has taken part in a number of exhibitions, projects and residences both nationally and internationally including: NatWest Art Prize, selected by Marjorie Althorpe-Guyton & Callum Innes; Lothbury Gallery London; East International, Norwich Gallery, selected by Lawrence Weiner & Jack Wendler; A13 at the Wapping project, as part of a collaboration with artist Jock McFadyen and writer Iain Sinclair, funded by the Architecture Foundation; Royal Academy Summer exhibition, invited artist, selected by Tess Jaray; The Vickers Art Award, 12 month residency based in Derbyshire, with two solo museum exhibitions, publication, and a short collaboration with poet and broadcaster Iain McMillan; Visiting Artist, School of Fine Art, Illinois State University, US; ACME Fire Station Residency, selected by Cornelia Parker & Tracey McKenna; Solo show at Mappin Museum, Sheffield, selected by Charles Esche & Paul Nesbitt; and participant in the Artists Leadership Programme, Cultural Leadership Programme. She has work held in public and private collections across the UK.
Helena Benz In The Studio
My studio is based in a Modernist loft built in the 1930's. The former cigarette factory is situated in the Hoxton/De Beauvoir Town area of East London and is home to a diverse community of artists studios.
More About Helena Benz
What inspires you?
I am inspired by the landscape, architecture and small details around me, the beauty in the overlooked, forgotten and in between spaces.
Describe your creative process.
New works begin through the process of wandering and capturing images, ideas, details, colours, textures and surfaces. I take photographs, notes and collect sounds, these then become the starting point for drawings, paintings and print.
What are 3 words that best describe your work?
Geometric, abstract, architectural
Who are some artists that have influenced your work?
I am very much influenced by early and mid-century Modernism, art, design, tetxtiles and architecture from the Bauhaus to Brutalism
Where do you go for inspiration?
I walk around with my camera, using the lens as my eye to capture small details, compositions, shapes, perspectives and colors.