Joseph Beuys

Partitur [Score] (1967)

About this artwork

The title of 'Partitur' indicates that this collage is a score, which sets it in a musical context. The idea of a work of art as a 'score' reflects the artist's concept of drawing as a source or 'reservoir' of ideas for future artistic projects. However, unlike most musical scores, which are designed to be read by anyone wishing to perform the piece, this work remains personal to the artist. Beuys's first 'action' was performed in 1963, in connection with the Fluxus group. Although the group included artists experimenting in all forms of artistic activity, it was their use of music which was particularly influential on Beuys.

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  • title: Partitur [Score]
  • accession number: AR00678
  • artist: Joseph BeuysGerman (1921 - 1986)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Work on paper
  • date created: 1967
  • measurements: 69.20 x 69.40 cm
  • credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
  • copyright: © DACS 2016.
  • photographer: Antonia Reeve
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms

Joseph Beuys

Joseph Beuys

German artist Beuys believed that art was integral to everyday life. His own art was shaped by an experience early in his life. As a Luftwaffe pilot during the war, Beuys was shot down over the Crimea and was saved by nomadic Tartars. Barely alive, he was wrapped in felt and fat which preserved his body heat, and taken to safety on sledges pulled by dogs. This incident, and these particular elements, informed much of his art, which has a redemptive, mystical and ritualistic character. Central to his work were his 'Actions', which involved teaching, audience discussion and performance. The recurrent themes were social and political. Associated with the ecological movement - he was a founder member of the Green Party - he also had a strong influence on German politics.