Untitled
© DACS 2008

Reference URL

Untitled 1962
  • Artist Rooms
Beuys's interest in sound is indicated in this assemblage, which uses a vinyl record as its base. Sound was often an important part of the artist's 'actions', as he viewed the voice as a vital and direct transmitter of energy and a way to sculpt sound. Music also became an integral part of the artist's 'actions' of the 1960s, influenced by his collaborations with the Fluxus group which contained many musicians. Here, Beuys has covered a record with the distinctive matt brown Braunkreuz oil paint often used for his paintings. The addition of seeds and vegetable matter represents nature.

Glossary Open

Assemblage

Works of art constructed from pre-existing materials as opposed to work that is drawn, painted or carved. A broad term, invented by French artist Jean Dubuffet in the 1950s, it includes collage, sculptural objects and installation art.

Braunkreuz

A medium invented, and first used, by the German artist Joseph Beuys in the late 1950s. It literally translates as ‘brown cross’. Composed of a mixture of paint and blood, it evokes images of rust, dirt, excrement and blood. As a term it has associations with Christianity, Nazism, National Socialism, war and the occult. By varying the qualities of the component parts, Beuys could experiment with the colour, density and texture of this unusual material.

Fluxus

A collective of international artists formed in 1960 by the artist George Maciunas. Their name means ‘flowing’ in Latin, and they aimed to break down barriers between art and life by staging avant-garde musical performances and anti-art events which closely involved the public. A socially-motivated group, they promoted an inclusive and collective spirit and were opposed to the functionless art object and the ego-driven artist. Among the various group members were Joseph Beuys, Nam June Paik, John Cage, Daniel Spoerri and Yoko Ono.

Assemblage, Braunkreuz, Fluxus

Details

  • Acc. No. AR00656
  • Medium Oil, seeds and vegetable matter on vinyl record
  • Size 30.40 x 29.90 x 6.00 cm
  • Credit ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008