Red strips of fabric hang down in the foreground while a large irregular piece of forged metal hangs in the background

Cecilia Vicuña Quipu Womb 2017 © Cecilia Vicuña. Joseph Beuys, Lightning with Stag in its Glare 1958–85© DACS, 2021. Photo: Joe Humphrys

Room 8 in Artist and Society

Cecilia Vicuña and Joseph Beuys

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Joseph Beuys, Lightning with Stag in its Glare  1958–85

In the massive installation Lightning with Stag in its Glare (1958-85), the suspended, bronze triangle embodies the energy of a powerful flash of lightning, which illuminates a group of half-formed creatures. The ‘stag’ of the title was originally made from an ironing board and then cast in bright aluminium to suggest the glare of the lightning. The cart represents a goat, and the clods of bronze on the floor are primordial creatures. A small compass, mounted on top of a box, is another reference, with the lightning flash itself, to the natural energies of the earth.

Gallery label, November 2005

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artworks in Cecilia Vicuña and Joseph Beuys

Art in this room

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Joseph Beuys Lightning with Stag in its Glare 1958–85