Joseph Beuys Bathroom of Circe 1954–8

Artwork details

Artist
Joseph Beuys 1921–1986
Title
Bathroom of Circe
Badezimmer der Circe
Date 1954–8
Medium Watercolour and gold paint on paper and board
Dimensions Support: 213 x 304 mm
Collection
Acquisition ARTIST ROOMS
Acquired jointly with the National Galleries of Scotland through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
Reference
AR00636
Not on display
ARTIST ROOMS

Online caption

Circe is a figure from Greek mythology, sometimes depicted as a witch or sorceress. She transformed her enemies into animals by giving them magic potions, a fact which reflects Beuys's interest in shamanism. This work, which is a collage of paper on board, also shows the artist's interest in the Irish writer James Joyce. Joyce's epic novel 'Ulysses', contains an episode in the second part called 'Circe', and from 1958 to 1961 Beuys wrote two new chapters for 'Ulysses'. Joyce is believed by some critics to be the addressee of the group of drawings Beuys assembled called 'The secret block for a secret person in Ireland'.

About this artwork