previews

Joseph Beuys, Aktion Eurasia Sibrischen Synphonie. 32 Staz, 1963. Performance view, Galerie René Block, Berlin, October 31, 1966. Photo: Jürgen Müller-Schneck.

Moscow

“Joseph Beuys: Appeal for an Alternative”

Moscow Museum of Modern Art
25 Petrovka Street (also at 10 Gogolevsky blvd, 9 Tverskoy blvd, and 17 Ermolaevsky lane)
September 12–November 14

Curated by Eugen Blume

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The first major Joseph Beuys exhibition in Moscow proposes the artist’s work as a site of inveterate turbulence, a hodgepodge of visceral didacticism, and calls for social transformation that serially engages the East within the West. In Beuys’s art-life cosmology, Russia is the hulking Eurasian landmass of energy and potential, the great unknown variable in the equation of Western civilization. Bringing together literally—literally!—hundreds of works and ephemera, “Appeal for an Alternative” includes such seminal installations as The End of the Twentieth Century, 1983–85, as well as graphic works, multiples, and video documentation of performances such as How to Explain Pictures to a Dead Hare, 1965, in which the artist will appear perfectly suited, as it were, for Moscow in 2012: Joseph Beuys, rational shaman, enthusiast of the East, inventor of political magic.