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Wessi Benderlieva Karl Hofer was born in 1971 in Sofia, Bulgaria. She has been drawing and painting since her early childhood. Early on Wessi endured  periods of stagnation and political restrictions in the then Communist Bulgaria. She studied at the prestigious Sofia School of Fine Arts. But her greatest lesson that she learnt, in her own words was, “That there are things that no one can take from us. My thoughts and images that I carry with me are indestructible.” Only through art, she was able to express things that are not possible in thought or words.

In 1991 she graduated from the Sofia School of Fine Arts, with her thesis work, “The Tower of Bable” awarded first prize. This series took Wessi to Vienna, where she immediate admittance to the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts. Wessi won the first prize in the “Lenzing AG”, and an award in the “Datentechnik” Competition, Vienna, in 1992.

She then won a scholarship at the Montclair State University in New Jersey in 1993, where she got the chance to discover a new world. She also worked at the “National Academy of Art and Design,” New York City. Wessi later learned the painting restoration in the master classes for restoration and conservation at the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts. She became a member of the International Group for Realism.

In 1996 she graduated with honors for painting and graphics from the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts. In the following year, she was invited to exhibit at the  H.R. Giger Museum in Switzerland.

Wessi lives and works in Vienna with her ​​family. Her artworks are included in many private collections.


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Dreamscapes Exhibition – Alden Biesen Belgium

Start: 11/10/2014
End: 14/12/2014
On 11 October 2014 the Dreamscapes exhibition for contemprary imaginary realism will be opened at the “Landcommanderij Alden Biesen” in Bilzen, Belgium. For two months there will be about 300 works of art created by more than 70 contemporary masters, representing Imaginary Realism from all across the globe.
Austronauten Exhibition Viechtach

Austronauten Exhibition Viechtach

Start: 22/06/2012
End: 26/08/2012
The Bavarian Forest of town of Viechtach, known as the "center of the fantastic art" of Bavaria, welcomes the AUSTROnauten soon: Artists from Austria and Australia, which follow the tradition of Viennese Fantastics their own way. The opening of the AUSTROnauten exhibition takes place on Friday, 22 June 2012 at 7pm in the Alten Rathaus, Viechtach.
50 Originals – Galerie 10

50 Originals – Galerie 10

Start: 30/11/2011
End: 31/12/2011
Galerie 10 which specializes in Fantastic Realism will exhibit "50 original" works of art by Benedetto Fellin, Luigi La Speranza, Peter Gric, Christian Flora und Wessi.

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Dreams and Divinities

Dreams and Divinities


Dreams & Divinities – Sacred Expressions from Women 13 painters and 8 poets from around the world, is a book by Liba WS. Dreams & Divinities is a 120 page visual and poetic journey which unfolds through love, the Goddess and God, creation, nature, introspection, mythology and compassion.

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Featured Artist Peter Gric