Fat was a material Beuys loved – when solid it could be shaped and moulded, and when liquid it could flow and soak into other materials. In a similar version of this work, which uses the chair without the addition of vitrine and thermometer, the fat is neatly shaped into a triangular wedge. Here, it is roughly smeared on to the seat, contrasting with the neat lines of the white chair. The simplicity of the chair recalls Van Gogh’s famous image of his own chair, painted in 1888. With his keen interest in language, Beuys would have enjoyed the double meaning of the word ‘stuhl’ as chair and excrement (stool).
- Materials:Wood, glass, metal, fabric, paint, fat and thermometer
- Date created:1964 – 1985
- Measurements:183.00 x 155.00 x 64.00 mm
- Credit line: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