»every human being is an artist« joseph beuys, 1968b
joseph beuys’s maxim »every human being is an artist« redefined the boundaries of art. he devoted his creative energies to finding a way of involving all human beings in the realization of a fair society. for beuys every work of art was a way of advancing human knowledge and understanding – and a test bed for his own far-reaching ideas. he often developed works during the course of public discussions and actions.
when beuys delivered one of his unorthodox lectures on the dynamic continuum of life and art at the whitechapel gallery in london in 1972, his words and performance were an inspiration for the then 23-year-old student tony cragg and continued to influence cragg’s engagement with the core topics of matter and movement. in honour of beuys’s 100th birthday cragg has selected 20 exhibits from the collections of some of beuys’s most important fellow travelleres. these works, in conjunction with a series of lectures, pave the way for an in-depth re-examination of beuys’s art. the exhibits enter into dialogue with each other and could be described – in the beuysian sense – as a battery filled with energy, a reservoir of potential and ideas.
curated by dr. corinna thierolf and tony cragg, with curatorial assistance from cora faßbender