Joseph Beuys

Schmela

1966

Artist
Joseph Beuys 1921–1986
Original title
Schmela
Medium
Oil paint on paper
Dimensions
Support: 400 x 564 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
Reference
AR00676

Not on display

Online caption

The title of the work refers to Alfred Schmela, the German artist and owner of Galerie Schmela in Düsseldorf. Schmela was a promoter of avant-garde art and an early supporter of Beuys. Beuys first met Schmela in 1958, and was introduced to Yves Klein by the gallerist. He performed some of his 'actions' at Galerie Schmela, including the infamous 1965 performance 'How to Explain Pictures to a Dead Hare'. This painting in Braunkreuz oil looks to be of a figure at the edge of a cliff, perhaps suggesting Schmela's risky role as pioneer of new and cutting-edge art.