Joseph Beuys

The Table

1952

Medium
Graphite, watercolour and stamp on paper
Dimensions
Support: 209 x 297 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
AR00098

Online caption

For Joseph Beuys, drawings were a way to work out ideas in their early stages. He described them as 'reservoirs' from which he could take source material and return to many times. The look of the drawing was not of central important to Beuys, as it was primarily designed to capture and represent his ideas. In this drawing, a page of calculation forms the backdrop for a male figure, drawn in iron chloride, who adds a human presence. The words on the ink stamp can be translated literally as 'Main Stream' or 'Power line', but the stamp is a later addition to the work.