Joseph Beuys
Blue on Centre 1984

Artwork details

Joseph Beuys 1921–1986
Blue on Centre
Date 1984
Medium Painted metal on card
Dimensions Support: 316 x 240 mm
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
Not on display

Online caption

Although Beuys did not create art in a deliberately abstract style, this work is reminiscent of German artist Josef Albers's series of works 'Homage to the Square', as well as of the colourful abstracts of Beuys's favourite pupil, Blinky Palermo. The use of the square here focuses attention on the simplicity of the shape and the colour, made all the more striking by the neutral cardboard background. Beuys viewed colour as a 'material', using it deliberately and sparingly. As a primary colour, blue can be used to make other colours, and is often associated with spirituality. Palermo made extensive use of blue, with spiritual connotations, in his work.

About this artwork