Willy Robert Huth
* 1890 Erfurt
† 1977 Amrum
Willy Robert Huth counts among the most remarkable artist personalities of the "lost generation" of artists of Expressive Realism.
Willy Robert Huth was born in Erfurt in1890. At the age of 14 he attended the school of arts and crafts in his native town, where he studied until 1906; in 1907 Willy Robert Huth began a three-year apprenticeship in the studio of the Stuttgart court painter Paul Kämmerer. By recommendation of his teacher's nephew, Willy Baumeister, Willy Robert Huth came in touch with artist's around the great innovator Adolf Hölzel, who had been called to Stuttgart in 1905.
After he had completed his apprenticeship, Willy Robert Huth enrolled at the Düsseldorf School of Applied Arts in 1910 and was active in the office of the architect Wilhelm Kreis. In 1914 Kreis got a commission for the famous Cologne exhibition "Der Deutsche Werkbund" across to Huth.
World War I interrupted the promising development of Willy Robert Huth: In 1915 he was drafted, in 1918 he got into English captivity. It was only after the war that Huth settled in Berlin as a freelance painter in 1919.
This was the place to be for the artistic avant-garde, and Willy Robert Huth, whose works stand in line with the art of the "Brücke" artist group, was part of this movement: He was in contact with George Grosz, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, Karl Hofer, Max Pechstein and Erich Heckel, in 1919 he was a founding member of the expressionist artist group "Jung-Erfurt", he showed works in the Free Secession in 1920 and was part of the first exhibition of German in the U.S.A. in 1923.
Travelling years (1923-1927) followed, which led Willy Robert Huth to Paris and Italy, but also to Switzerland, Austria and Spain. Back in Berlin he joined the Berlin Secession in 1928 and the Deutscher Künstlerbund (Association of German Artists) in 1929. His paintings and graphic works from these years, which also reflect the influence of James Ensor, often show circus artists, jugglers, gypsies, fair- and carnival scenes. Additionally, he made still lives, portraits and self portraits as well as landscapes, architecture views and, all in line with the latest trend, city views.
The Nazi's takeover put the development of Willy Robert Huth on hold. The artist was defamed as degenerate and an exhibition ban was imposed on him in 1937. In 1944 Willy Robert Huth was drafted once again and got into Russian captivity. An air raid on Berlin leveled his studio and destroyed all the works.
In 1945, Willy Robert Huth, who had returned to Berlin, was faced with ruins. However, he continued his career, taught at the Art School Berlin-Weißensee as of 1946 and held a post as professor at the University of Fine Arts for a decade as of 1947. In 1949 Willy Robert Huth and artists such as Hofer, Pechstein and Schmidt-Rottluff founded the "Berliner Neue Gruppe". In terms of style and motif Willy Robert Huth continued his art from the days before the war, but he also made paintings of the bombed-out city of Berlin and rendered impressions from his days of war captivity.
Willy Robert Huth, who pursued artistic activities up until an old age, spent the summer months on the Noth Sea island of Amrum, where he died in 1977.