Joseph Beuys

1921 in Krefeld, Germany – 1986 in Duesseldorf, Germany

Joseph Beuys – unique pieces, multiples and original graphics from the most important German artist of the post-war period

Joseph Beuys (1921-1986) is still considered one of the most important and influential protagonists of 20th century art. As an outstanding performance artist, art theorist, sculptor and draftsman, he dealt intensively with social-philosophical topics, humanism and anthroposophy. Based on the Fluxus movement, he developed his “expanded concept of art” and the concept of “social sculpture” as a social work of art.

“Every person is an artist”

With his actions and works of art, Joseph Beuys questions the concept of art as such. He deals intensively with the problem of how art can exist in today’s industrial society and what new tasks it has to do. Using symbolic natural materials such as felt, fat and honey, Joseph Beuys emphasizes the symbolic value of the material. He himself explains that these materials have a shamanic, mythical charge through traumatic war experiences in the Second World War. As an artist, Joseph Beuys created an enormous oeuvre that transcended all conventional genre boundaries. In addition to the processual art actions, it includes spatial installations, sculptural works, watercolors, drawings, graphics, multiples and writings.

Beuys hand-signed original graphics, lithographs, etchings, multiples and unique pieces

At Galerie Kellermann you will find a large selection of rare hand-signed original graphics such as lithographs, etchings and screen prints, many original multiples by Joseph Beuys and even unique pieces by the Düsseldorf master.

Biography

In 1961, Joseph Beuys was appointed professor of monumental sculpture at the Düsseldorf Art Academy. From then on, he conveyed his ideas as a teacher like no other before (“If you don’t think, you’re thrown out!”) and had a significant influence on many of his students and on art in general. Beuys supervised an unusually large number of students and enabled very different artistic personalities to develop. Among them were crossers between performance and installation such as Felix Dröse and Katharina Sieverding, but also outstanding painters such as Jörg Immendorff, Anselm Kiefer, Imi Knoebel, Bernd Schwarzer and Blinky Palermo.

Numerous Fluxus and happening events and lectures brought with them tremendous publicity; Joseph Beuys became the leading figure of the ’68 movement, which fought against established, rigid social ideologies. So Beuys took on the NRW state government of Johannes Rau, which ultimately resulted in his expulsion from the Düsseldorf Academy.

International recognition

As the most important modern performance artist and revolutionary of modern art, Joseph Beuys became the congenial counterpart of Andy Warhol, who visited him at the art academy in Düsseldorf and who captured him several times in his famous screen prints. In 1964, Beuys took part in Documenta III in Kassel for the first time, which he was to attend constantly from then on. In the “Art Compass” Joseph Beuys is regularly listed together with Andy Warhol as the most influential artists of 20th century art.

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