Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Joseph Beuys was a man of deeds, always ready for revolution.
Joseph Beuys was entirely clear from the very beginning that the outer appearance had to come from the visual profile of his actions. While he presented himself in the first ten years of his career as an artist that still painted in the manner of the civilized Bohemian wearing a black suit and tie, he changed his image in 1960 and wore nothing but jeans, a working vest, and a Stetson from then on. This prominent look could be interpreted as a mixture between a working outfit and Western style; in any case, Beuys was a man of deeds, always ready for revolution. But then again, there are the surprising statements he made that parody the Titanic creator and outlaw, for instance when he said of his hat, which had long since become notorious: "When I did these first actions, I was wearing a hat; I had the impression that I had to stay the way I was. Actually, I wanted to turn myself into a natural creature. I wanted to always have the same thing - in the way a rabbit has ears, I wanted to have a hat! A rabbit isn't a rabbit any more when it doesn't have ears - and I thought, Beuys isn't Beuys anymore when he doesn't have a hat." - Deutsche Bank Art Magazine