Joseph Beuys

To Mikis Theodorakis (1982)

About this artwork

‘To Mikis Theodorakis’ is a sixteen part work on rough paper from the Hotel Grande Bretagne, a historic five star hotel in Greece. Beuys made drawings on every type of paper from lining paper to wrapping paper and newspaper. Works such as this, which brought together many parts into a single work were common in Beuys’s practice and explored the boundaries between two and three dimensions. The work is dedicated to the world-famous Greek composer and political activist Mikis Theodorakis who was taught by Joseph Beuys.

see media
  • title: To Mikis Theodorakis
  • accession number: AL00197
  • artist: Joseph BeuysGerman (1921 - 1986)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Work on paper
  • medium: Embossed paper in frame
  • date created: 1982
  • measurements: Each part: 12.40 x 8.00 cm
  • credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Lent by Anthony d'Offay 2010
  • copyright: © DACS 2016.
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.