Gianluca Costantini
A Drawn Biography on Joseph Beuys

Joseph Beuys Boy

The parents had moved from Geldern to Krefeld in 1910, and Beuys was born there on 12 May 1921. In autumn of that year the family moved to Kleve, an industrial town in the Lower Rhine region of Germany, close to the Dutch border. There, Joseph attended primary school (Katholische Volksschule) and secondary school (Staatliches Gymnasium Cleve, now the Freiherr-vom-Stein-Gymnasium). His teachers considered him to have a talent for drawing; he also took piano and cello lessons. On several occasions he visited the studio of the Flemish painter and sculptor Achilles Moortgat. His other interests included Nordic history and mythology and especially the natural sciences.

Joseph Beuys


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