Sculptor Benno Schotz was born to Jewish parents, Jacob Schotz, a watchmaker, and Cherna Tischa Abramovitch, in Arensburg, Russia (now Kuressaare, Estonia) 28 August 1891. He was educated at the Boys Grammar School of Pärnu, Estonia. Later he studied at the Grossherzogliche Technische Hochschule in Darmstadt, Germany. In 1912, he immigrated to Glasgow, where he gained an engineering diploma from the Royal Technical College and from 1914–23 worked in the drawing office of John Brown and Company, Clydebank shipbuilders while attending evening classes in sculpture at the Glasgow School of Art. Schotz became a full-time sculptor in 1923 and subsequently a member of the Royal Scottish Academy, Head of Sculpture at the Glasgow School of Art (a post he held from 1938 until his retirement in 1961), and later, in 1963, Sculptor in Ordinary for Scotland. His pupils included the artists Hannah Frank, Stewart Bowman Johnson, and Inge King (née Neufeld). His homes at West Campbell Street and later Kirklee Road were a focus for meetings of artists, writers, actors, and politicians. His first solo Glasgow exhibition was at Reid's Gallery in 1926 and his first in London at Alex Reid and Lefevre Ltd (Lefevre Gallery) in 1930. He was also a member of Glasgow Art Club, alongside recently arrived refugee artists Jankel Adler and Josef Herman, for whom he organised local Jewish community support. In 1942 he organised the important 'Jewish Art Exhibition' at the Glasgow Institute as an act of Jewish cultural identity during the Second World War.

In 1981 Schotz was made a Freeman of the City of Glasgow and in the same year, Gordon Wright published his autobiography, Bronze in My Blood. During his career, Schotz produced several hundred portraits and compositions including figure compositions, religious sculptures, semi-abstracts and modelled portraits, the majority located in Glasgow and the surrounding area. He was responsible for the repair of the bridge sculpture at Kelvingrove Park beside the now refurbished art gallery and museum. A major retrospective exhibition of his works was held at the Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh in 1971. He was Life-President of the Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts as well as Honorary Member of both the Royal British Society of Sculptors and the Royal Institute of Architects in Scotland. Benno Schotz died in Glasgow, Scotland on 11 October 1984. His last sculpture was executed less than six weeks before his death, aged 93. He was a committed Zionist and was buried in Jerusalem. His work is represented in numerous UK collections including the Edinburgh City Art Centre, Perth Museum and Art Gallery and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery.