Maler + Grafiker

Günter Kiefer Lerch


Günter Kiefer-Lerch / The artist in his garden

Günter Kiefer Lerch (Benno)
German painter (12.19.1937 – 10.20.2014)

Günter Kiefer Lerch, also known as Benno, was born in Gdansk in 1937. His mother escaped with him and his older brother in a horse-drawn carriageto Germany towards the end of World War II. In 1949 the migration to Mecklenburg was made.

In 1956 he completed high school in Ribnitz. Afterwards he visited the School of Applied Arts in Heiligendamm. In 1960 he finished his studies of Commercial Graphic Arts, then moved 1964 to Berlin to work for the former East German ad agency „DEWAG“ (Deutsche Werbe- und Anzeigengesellschaft).

In 1965 he became a member of the Association of Graphic Arts of the GDR. An association that represented artists like Otto Manigk, Otto Nagel or Lea Grundig. He illustrated advertisings and books for the „Aufbau-Verlag“, „Rütten & Loening“ and the „Eulenspiegel“ (publishing companies). As from 1989 he appeared as a freelance painter and graphic artist in Berlin. Kiefer-Lerch became an important representative of the Berlin art scene with references to Lyonel Feininger, Marc Chagall or Wassily Kandinsky.

In his curious works imaginative landscapes can be found. Landscapes that are shaped by wind, water, light and by the tide. Kiefer-Lerch developed a unique style and set vibrant and translucent accentuations that are especially to be seen in his pastels works. Skillfully the painter uses various techniques, made of lines, curves, shapes, hatchings, spatter and scratches. It renders an overall impression of a world of its own, in a way only this artist has seen.

Time and again topics like the sea, old fisherman’s cottages, seagulls – the home of the artist where he painted very often. Furthermore unique northern sceneries came into being that reflect his closeness to nature. Whereas one section of his paintings is dominated by the colour blue, his other works consist of exciting and strong colours, full with passion and energy. And even fabulous images are to be found.Kiefer-Lerch in seinem Atelier

Figurations are abstracted, love becomes fascination of the moment, the concrete shifts into far distance. While looking at the paintings of Günter Kiefer-Lerch details attract the attention repeatedly. Little details that the eye misses at first. That way these works are an insatiable journey into the bizarre universe of a painter and an everlasting dream.

On the other hand the artist also was a critical observer which captured social conditions into caricatures. He personally chose a minimalist lifestyle deliberately and often times you could see him ride around Berlin on his old bicycle.

Until his death in 2014 Kiefer Lerch lived and worked in his little studio in Berlin-Friedrichshagen.

But he always remained bound to the North and travelled regularly to working sojourns to the Baltic Sea. To Hiddensee and Ahrenshoop (artist colony) for example. Günter Kiefer-Lerch was co-founder of the „Cartoonfabrik Köpenick“.

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Tags: Günter Kiefer Lerch (Benno) – Painter – Graphic artist – Pastels – Works – Exhibitions – Biography – Painting – Baltic Sea – Berlin – Ahrenshoop – Ostssemaler – Painting