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The Shaman's Two Bags
© DACS 2015

Reference URL

The Shaman's Two Bags 1977

On Display Modern Two

  • Artist Rooms
The presence of the shaman is felt in this drawing, not through the man himself being shown but by his belongings being featured. Beuys felt a deep connection with the figure of the shaman, who appears in tribal cultures across the world. The shape of the bag on the left looks as if a pair of antlers is growing from the top, recalling the artist's fascination with the stag. The hook shape at the side looks like the top of the staff used by a shepherd or shaman. On the bag on the right, a shape like a tuning fork or divining stick emerges from the side of the bag.


  • Acc. No. AR00129
  • Medium Graphite, crayon and ink on paper
  • Size 76.00 x 56.40 cm; support (right): 74.50 x 55.90 mm)
  • 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