Joseph Beuys

May 2021 sees the centenary of the birth of Joseph Beuys. 

This website draws attention to the ideas of Joseph Beuys - which still have great relevance to our current situation especially in areas such as education, the environment, economic models, social sculpture and art practice generally.

I aim to keep you informed of all the work that has been and is still being done in his name and spirit - especially highlighting those in 2021. This is a very large undertaking, started in May 2020. It will take many months or years to complete. I welcome your support by bringing to my attention any relevant work that you believe will add to the site's comprehensiveness.  The 'About' page gives a little more detail.

In navigating the site, the menu items at the top of the home page lead to areas of general interest, whilst the section buttons on the home page lead to specific areas of interest.

The site is very much under preparation but please keep me informed of any existing or future events that you know of, or are planning. Please use the form below.
Thank you for looking.
Cliff Gorman

        A Happy Fat Christmas to robin and you!                      Image: thanks to Ken Stanway


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Where are we?

Joseph Beuys was one of the most influential artists of the 20th Century. He widened the very concept of art by including 'invisible materials' such as thoughts, feelings, and actions as materials which require 'sculpting'. And, since everyone participates in this sculpting process, a process he called ‘social sculpture’, he maintained 'Everyone is an artist' and we all have the capacity to shape the world we inhabit for the better. But where are we on this path? Hopefully, this website will provide some answers to this question.


"Terremoto in Palazzo" The process of rearrangement of the Terrae Motus collection at the Royal Palace of Caserta begins, on the occasion of the fortieth anniversary of the earthquake in Irpinia, Southern Italy on November 23, 1980. The earthquake caused 3000 deaths and 8000 injuries. The destruction was the occasion of an extraordinary cultural operation by the Neapolitan gallery owner Lucio Amelio who summoned the greatest artists of the time to transform the catastrophe of the earthquake into a creative force. Forty years after the dramatic event, the Royal Palace of Caserta reopens the dialogue begun at that time between contemporary language and real environments. The masterpieces of many of the greatest contemporary artists will be placed along the traditional museum route in the royal apartments. The exhibition will open with Joseph Beuys' "Terremoto in Palazzo". It is in the first room, that of the Halberdiers, to remember, taking up his text-proclamation, that "every man possesses the most precious palace in his head, in his feeling, in his will ...". The Royal Palace of Caserta is closed to the public until December 4.

"BEUYS INSPIRED AND MÜLHEIM COMES” is the annual theme for 2021 in the city of Mülheim an der Ruhr, Germany. A large joint exhibition with the same title will celebrate the centenary year of his birth in the RUHR GALLERY MÜLHEIM. For applications to participate in the exhibition or for the provision of loans please email: or call the Mülheimer Kunstverein KKRR: 0208 46949-567. More details here.

In Gröbenzell, Tuesday December 1st, 2020:  Joseph Beuys: thought leader of the green movement Course leader Dr. Dorothée Siegelin  7.30 p.m. - 9 p.m. at the Bürgerhaus Saal     Course fee € 7.50
For Joseph Beuys (1921-1986), art was a means of changing society. He worked with new, and at the time unusual, means and materials, not only fat and felt, but washing powder was also used. In doing so, he tried to trigger thought processes in each individual that would lead to a change in the political and social order. Actions such as "7000 oaks - urban forest instead of city administration" (1982) were pioneering achievements for the green movement.
vhs Gröbenzell e.V., Rathausstraße 1 | 82194 Gröbenzell Telefon 08142 44803-0 | Fax 08142 44803-22 E-Mail:

Call for papers - Space and Time - Joseph Beuys’ Installation Art, its Presentation and Conservation

Thursday, 16 September, 2021 to Friday, 17 September, 2021. Submission deadline, Friday, 22 January, 2021.  Place - Kassel, Germany. More details here.

Kunstkompass continues to place Beuys very highly

In the top 20 contemporary artists who have already died, Kunstcompass’s placements in the first three places have remained the same compared to 2019. Andy Warhol leads in first place, closely followed by Joseph Beuys and,  some distance behind, Sigmar Polke. Kunstkompass has measured the fame and rank of contemporary artists around the world for the last 50 years. It does this as objectively as possible by focussing on the response of the professional world to the artist. Sales prices do not play a role in the evaluation of the now more than 30,000 artists. Instead, the following criteria are assessed with points: Solo exhibitions in one of the more than 300 renowned international museums such as the MoMA in New York; Participation in one of the annual 100 group exhibitions such as the Documenta in Kassel; Reviews in renowned art magazines; Purchases from well-known museums; Honours with awards such as the Turner Prize in London; and in the case of sculptures, also outdoor installations.From:

Bog Action

A new 22 metre high viewing tower that offers a magnificent view of De Groote Peel National Park in the Netherlands was officially opened on September 25th 2020. This is the area where Beuys created his ‘Bog Action’. On the top floor of the viewing tower are four almost life-size photographs of the action taken by Gianfranco Gorgoni and which are the only record of the event. See more on the Bog Action here. 

Beuys celebrated on tram

Image: Saviour1981 / CC BY-SA (

Beuys - Events

The work of Joseph Beuys is known throughout the world. Consequently there are numerous exhibitions, seminars, conferences, and talks etc taking place in many countries, and at many times, in any one year.
With the centenary of Beuys' birth taking place in 2021 many events are being especially planned for then.
This section is unlikely to be completed until after the coronavirus pandemic has been brought under control.

Many events are already planned in the region where Beuys lived, see here

Joseph Beuys with Petra Kelly

Beuys - issues & ideas

Beuys was concerned with an array of issues many of which, although current in the last quarter of the 20th century, still remain of great concern today. For example the environment, education, political sysyems, use of money, nuclear proliferation, inequality, sexism, racial, East-West division, etc

Joseph Beuys 'Sled' Also part of the installation 'The Pack'

Image: Fred Romero from Paris, France / CC BY (

Beuys- the man and his art

Joseph Beuys was born in Krefeld, Germany on 12th May, 1921 and died at his home in Düsseldorf on 23rd January 1986.
Beuys' extensive body of work principally comprises four domains: works of art in a traditional sense (painting, drawing, sculpture and installations), performance, contributions to the theory of art and academic teaching, and social- and political activities.

Beuys and Leonardo

Beuys -Resources

Here you will find links to books, articles, documents, films, videos, audios etc.