Joseph Beuys, …IRGEND EIN STRANG…, Galerie Schmela, Dusseldorf, 1965

Opening: November 26, 1965, 89 p.m.

Dimensions: 21 x 14.8 cm (folded out 21 x 29.6 cm)

Further Information: For the opening of …irgend ein Strang…his first solo exhibition in a commercial galleryJoseph Beuys performed his groundbreaking work Wie man einem toten Hasen die Bilder erklärt [How to explain images to a dead hare]. For more than an hour, Beuys moved around the gallery space alone with a dead hare on his arm, showing it all 38 exhibited works or moving around on all fours, animating the hare as if walking by itself. Visitors were initially allowed to enter the gallery space; after this they could only observe the scene from outside. Later, Beuys sat in a corner by the window on a “warm chair”, of which one leg was wrapped in felt. In addition to his cradling of the dead hare, a layer of honey and gold leaf was glued to Beuys’ face. Pointing to the value of the head and its ability to think, Beuys later explained that his performance was a critique of the rationalist intellect of humans. A dead hare, metaphorically, could potentially understand more about the reality of about modern art than a person. In 2005, Marina Abramovic re-staged Beuys’ performance at the Guggenheim Museum in New York.


Images: Images of the invitation and all other archival documents shown on this page, excluding the videos, are part of the online collection of Archiv der Avantgarden, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden.

Joseph Beuys

An episode of TV show Club 2, titled “Art or Fake?”, hosted by Adolf Holl, in conversation with Joseph Beuys, György Ligeti, Annelie Pohlen, Peter Weibel, and Hildegard Fässler (ORF, TV Channel, January 27, 1983). Includes original footage from Wie man einem toten Hasen die Bilder erklärt, a performance by Beuys for the opening for his show …irgend ein Strang… at Galerie Schmela in Dusseldorf in 1965.