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 several years to complete, if ever. This site focuses on Joseph Beuys and does not attempt to include work by other artists or Beuys' practitioners.  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 young Beuys in Kurhaus Kleve.  A poster advertising the exhibition 'Work Lines'         (Werklinien) in 2016                                                                           Image: Cliff Gorman


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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.


A Global-Lab. The Kassel-21 / Social Sculpture Lab – curated by Shelley Sacks for the Documenta Archiv, the Neue Galerie, Kassel, and the City of Kassel – is a global lab for the 2021 Joseph Beuys Centenary celebrations, in Kassel, and online, that creates the opportunities for making “social honey” by actively engaging with Joseph Beuys’ expanded understanding of art, and creating a place of questions. Throughout 2021, the Kassel-21 Social Sculpture Lab will offer multiple opportunities for experiencing new forms of thinking-together and connective practice for working toward a humane and ecologically just future. See: where you can also register your interest.

Beuys around the Clock. The Temporary Art Museum in Mülheim, Germany (a shop premises at Schloßstraße 28-30 whilst the Art Museum is closed) innovatively uses a shop window for a small exhibition “Joseph Beuys: Posters - Stations of His Art” displaying books, posters and archival material. The window display is also used as a reminder that the film “BEUYS” by Werner Nekes and Dore O., which was awarded the German Film Critics Prize, was shot in 1981 in the Atelier am Kassenberg in Mülheim an der Ruhr. The shop window can be viewed around the clock until February 21st.

The Kupferstich-Kabinett in Dresden is part of the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen of Dresden, and is located in Dresden Castle. The gallery has recently received more than 170 drawings by Beuys on loan from Heiner Bastian who for many years worked as an agent, assistant and private secretary to Beuys. Beuys produced the drawings over the period 1945 to 1985.

"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.

New York's Dia Chelsea and Beuys' 7000 oaks. After a $20 million renovation and expansion Dia Chelsea has also extended its existing Beuys’ 7000 oaks sculpture by increasing the number of existing oaks and basalt columns along the street where the gallery is located. The newly enlarged gallery is due to re-open in April 2021.

"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.

Beuys - Events

To celebrate the centenary many events are already planned in the region where Beuys lived, see here

Beuys - issues & ideas

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Beuys was concerned with an array of issues. For example the environment, education, political sysyems, use of money, nuclear proliferation, inequality, sexism, racial, East-West division, etc

Beuys- the man and his art

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Beuys -Resources

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