Joseph Beuys
Facing the Stars 1978

Artwork details

Joseph Beuys 1921–1986
Facing the Stars
Gegenuber dem Fixsternhimmel
Date 1978
Medium 2 paper bags, graphite and stamp on glass
Dimensions Support (left): 186 x 127 mm
support (right): 187 x 127 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

Beuys was interested in the history and culture of the Celtic countries, and made several visits to Scotland and Ireland. The paper bags used in this relief may have been picked up by the artist during his 1974 trip to Ireland, in connection with the exhibition of his group of drawings, 'The Secret Block for a Secret Person in Ireland'. Critics believe James Joyce to be the 'Secret Person' to whom the work is addressed, as Beuys was a lifelong fan of the Irish writer. The iron frame used for this work may have been chosen by the artist due to the metal's strong connection with the earth as well as the bloodstream.

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