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"Benish’s work is saturated in symbolism. In search of archetypal meaning, she turns to non-Western traditions... There is a wild, even violent irony in this-(her appropriation of Durer is also ironical)-as well as a profound redemptive ecological intention... she creates rather than destroys artistic intention”.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Donald Kuspit, 1992

                                                                             catalog essay for “furer melancholicus”, Durer Haus, Stadtgeschichtliche Museen, Nurnberg, Germany


The Alchemist, 1989


Mixed media on mahogany


Death, knight, and Debil, 1988


Mixed media on mahogany

Behind beauty, 1992


"Barbara Benish’s reworking of Durer’s “Death of the Virgin” calls to mind key topics in population geography like mortality, conception and fertility. It also suggests that social institutions (in this case, religion and medicine) shape population events and our beliefs about them…Her reworking of Durer questions his-and the Enlightenment project’s –assumptions about knowledge. ..By zooming in and disrupting the subject-setting relationship, Benish asks if a subject can be satisfactorily ‘understood’ with reference to the contents of its setting. By superimposing red sight lines over Durer’s invisible graticule, Benish suggests a danger in assuming that mathematical conventions of the world are neutral.”

Adrian Bailey
in the Introduction to his book “Making Population Geography”, Hodder Arnold, London, 2005

The Circle Almost Circled(Another echo), 1992



Melancholia, 1988

360cm diameter

mixed media on mahogany