The Beuel painter Helmut Degenhard and the torches of the Vilich Adelheidis schoolchildren
at the Mayor Stroof House
Vernissage: Friday, 11.11.2022 at 7.00 p.m.
Introductory lecture: Dr. Sylva Harst
open daily from 5pm - 7pm
Finissage: Sunday, 20.11.2022 at 17.00
Guided tours for school classes are available on request.
The Beuel painter and graphic artist Helmut Degenhard (1924 - 2002) was an exceptional artist. Severely disabled from birth due to spastic paralysis, he initially took painting and drawing lessons with Bonn private tutor Theodor Pape, and from 1943 to 1946 he studied glass painting at the Cologne Academy of Art. He achieved his breakthrough in 1950, when the "Arbeitsgemeinschaft der Bonner Kunsterzieher" (working group of Bonn art teachers) exhibited twelve of his watercolours showing children in a (Beueler) St Martin's procession. This cycle was later published by the city of Bonn and used as a representative gift.
Although he also draws portraits and continues to paint watercolours, his artistic love is for stained glass. In close collaboration with the Derix glass workshop, the church windows of the parishes of St Michael (Weststadt), St Maria-Magdalena (Endenich), St Maria-Königin (St Augustin) and St Benediktus (Düsseldorf-Heerdt) are created according to his strict specifications. He also designed the stained glass windows at the Anne Frank secondary school in Vilich.
Since he is not only dependent on the support and care of his parents as an artist, it is a bitter blow for him when his mother dies in 1970 and his father twelve years later. It meant the end of his artistic career. He died on 4 October 2002.
The exhibition presents his twelve-part Martin cycle in Vilich's Bürgermeister-Stroof-Haus and is accompanied by the torches of Vilich's Adelheidis School children, who are invited to collect them again in a small ceremony on 20 November.