Each of Beuys’s multiples was produced in collaboration with a publisher, who oversaw its production and was responsible for its sale and distribution. Many were conceived by Beuys himself, while others were proposed by a publisher and developed under Beuys’s supervision. Listed here is a selection of publishers with whom Beuys worked most closely and with whom he created many of his best known multiples.

Lucio Amelio, Edizione Lucio Amelio, Naples (1965–1975: Modern Art Agency)

Lucio Amelio founded his gallery Modern Art Agency in Naples in 1965, re-naming it Galleria Lucio Amelio in 1975.1 In tandem with this shift, he established a separate publishing venture called Edizione Lucio Amelio. It was Amelio who introduced Beuys to the Italian art world with a solo exhibition in 1971. Thereafter, he and Beuys would collaborate on many projects, including a run of multiples that related to Beuys’s exhibitions at the gallery or to his other activities in Italy.2 Two of these works are among his most iconic: We are the Revolution (1972),3 which derived from a photograph taken for the poster of Beuys’s first exhibition with Amelio; and Capri Battery (1985), which was based on an object Beuys created at Amelio’s villa on the island of Capri.4

  1. See Accessed on May 23rd, 2014. 

  2. For more on Beuys’s first exhibition with Amelio, see Achille Bonito Oliva’s introduction to his interview with Beuys, ‘Partitura di Joseph Beuys: La Rivoluzione siamo Noi,’ in Warhol Beuys. Omaggio a Lucio Amelio, (Milano: Mazzotta, 2007), 61; Lucrezia De Domizio Durini, ‘Beuys. Life and Works,’ in De Domizio Durini (ed.), Beuys Voice, (Milano: Electa, 2011), 126-127; and Lothar Schirmer, ‘Kleine Geschichte der Beuys-Sammlung,’ in Joseph Beuys im Lenbachhaus und Schenkung Lothar Schirmer (München: Schirmer/Mosel, 2013), 10-11. 

  3. This mutliple was co-published with Edition Tangente. 

  4. Amelio recounts the story of the Capri Battery’s creation in Katharina Schmidt (ed.), Die Multiples: Beuys-Stiftung Ulbricht im Kunstmuseum Bonn (Bonn: Kunstmuseum Bonn, 1992), 59. 

René Block, Galerie René Block and Edition Block

René Block founded the Galerie René Block in West Berlin in 1964. Two years later he launched Edition Block.1 Block’s exhibitions and publications focussed on artists linked to two main artistic currents: the international Fluxus movement and a Pop-inflected graphic style that he referred to as Capitalist Realism.2

Block’s engagement with multiples was shaped by his wish to democratise art, making it available to a wider audience, especially young collectors. Preferring to focus on object-based works in his partnership with Beuys, Block published thirteen multiples, including iconic pieces such as Evervess II 1 (1968), Sled (1969) and Felt Suit (1970).3

  1. Barbara Heinrich, ‘Dem Multiple gehört die Zukunft.’ Der Verleger René Block, Accessed Feb 23rd, 2014. 

  2. René Block et al., Joseph Beuys – Wir betreten den Kunstmarkt: anläßlich der gleichnamigen Ausstellung auf der Art Cologne 21.4.–26.4.2009 und im ZADIK, 4.5.–31.7.2009 (Nürnberg: Verlag für Moderne Kunst, 2009), 10. For more on Capitalist Realism see, for example, René Block unter Mitarbeit von Prof. Dr. Carl Vogel, Grafik des Kapitalistischen Realismus. KP Brehmer, Hödicke, Lueg, Polke, Richter, Vostell. Werkverzeichnisse bis 1971 (Berlin: Edition Block, 1971). 

  3. Block describes this collaboration in Marc Gundell (ed.), Beuys für alle! (Heilbronn: Kunsthalle Vogelmann, 2010), 52.   

Lucrezia De Domizio Durini, Edizioni Lucrezia De Domizio, Pescara

A writer and curator who has been active in Italy since the late 1960s, the baroness Lucrezia De Domizio Durini first met Beuys in 1971.1 Together with her husband Buby Durini, she sponsored numerous events and social projects by Beuys in the Italian region of Abruzzo. Among these were the opening of a branch of the Free International University in the town of Pescara, the development of the long-term ecological project Defense of Nature [Difesa della Natura], which commenced in 1978 and continued until Beuys’s death, and the founding of a social group called Foundation for the Revival of Italian Agriculture [Fondazione per la rinascita dell’agricultura Italiana] in 1976. In 1980, Beuys began planting 7,000 trees in Abruzzo—a prelude to his better known 7000 Oaks project, which was carried out in Kassel in 1984.2 In tandem with Beuys’s activities in Abruzzo, De Domizio Durini published numerous multiples, including hand-made agricultural implements, regional food products like wine and olive oil, and a number of prints and posters. Each of these works doubled as a fund-raising vehicle and a means with which to publicise the projects to which they were attached.

  1. As recounted by De Domizio Durini in ‘Who ist Beuys?,’ Lucrezia De Domizio Durini (ed.), Beuys Voice, (Milano: Electa, 2011), 946. 

  2. For a useful summary of Beuys’s projects with De Domizio Durini, see Ilaria Apostoli, ‘Bolognano: Zufluchtsort für eine Utopie der Kunst,’ in Lucrezia De Domizio Durini (ed.), Beuys Voice, 374–382. 

Jörg Schellmann and Bernd Klüser, Verlag Schellmann und Klüser (1975–1984), Munich (1971–1974: Edition Schellmann)

Munich-based Jörg Schellmann and Bernd Klüser, first encountered Beuys in the late 1960s. In 1971 they presented the first exhibition of Beuys’s multiples in a small gallery run by Schellmann.1 Alongside this exhibition, the pair released a catalogue raisonné of Beuys’s multiples to date, which consisted of a ring binder containing a separate sheet of paper for each work.2 A special edition of the catalogue included a new multiple by Beuys called Fingernail Impression in Hardened Butter (1971) [Fingernagelabdruck aus gehährteter Butter]. In an interview published in the catalogue, Beuys described his multiples as ‘vehicles’ and ‘antennae’ for distributing his ideas—assertions that have since become central to the multiples’ reception.3 Together Klüser and Schellmann published approximately twenty multiples, including Celtic+∿∿∿∿ (1971), Flag (1974) and Telephone T——Я (1974). In 1974, the pair presented an installation by Beuys in Munich, entitled Show Your Wound [zeige deine Wunde] (1974-75), from which an important multiple arose.

  1. For further reading on Schellmann and Klüser: Accessed on May 13th, 2014. Accessed on May 13th, 2014. Accessed on May 13th, 2014. 

  2. This catalogue, which remains in print today, has since gone through numerous editions under the direction of Jörg Schellmann. See Jörg Schellmann (ed.), Joseph Beuys. The Multiples (Munich, New York: Edition Schellmann, 1997). 

  3. Jörg Schellmann and Bernd Klüser, ‘Questions to Joseph Beuys,’ in Jörg Schellmann (ed.), Joseph Beuys. The Multiples (Munich, New York: Edition Schellmann, 1997), 9-28. 

Klaus Staeck, Edition Staeck, Heidelberg (1968–1972: Edition Tangente)

The publisher with whom Beuys worked most frequently was Klaus Staeck, who was involved in the production of more than 200 multiples. Staeck specialised in postcards, but also published works on paper in other formats, along with many object-based multiples.

Beuys and Staeck first collaborated in 1968, on a group of postcards to be sold at that year’s documenta 4 exhibition in Kassel.1 While this venture brought little in the way of sales or recognition, the two would go on to build a strong partnership. During the next fifteen years they would release more than a hundred postcards, including a series of five special cards created using substances like felt and PVC, with which Beuys often worked in his art. While Beuys conceived some of the postcard multiples himself, it was Staeck who proposed the majority. Together with the publisher Gerhard Steidl, he organised their printing and distribution.2 In the case of a smaller group of posters that Staeck produced with Beuys, it was Beuys who proposed each work, leaving Staeck and Steidl to develop a design and then print the finished image.3

The Economic Values multiples of the late 1970s comprised a large group of object-based multiples that were published by Edition Staeck. Consisting of supermarket products that were signed, stamped and annotated by Beuys, many of these works were suggested by Staeck, who often brought back items from East Germany that he thought would be suitable for the series.4 During one of his visits to the East, Staeck and his brother Rolf, bought a group of enamel basins, which became the basis for the multiple for Footwashing (1977).5

  1. Staeck recalls this meeting in ‘Beuys und das Jahr der Postkarten,’ in Helmut Gold, Margret Baumann and Doris Hensch (eds.), ‘wer nicht denken will fliegt raus’: Joseph Beuys Postkarten, Sammlung Neuhaus (Heidelberg,  Edition Braus:  1998), 15–16. 

  2. See Staeck, ibid., 16; and Isabel Siben, ‘In Conversation with Joseph Beuys,’ in Isabel Siben (ed.), Beuys: Posters (Munich: Prestel, 2004), 12. 

  3. Siben, ibid., 13. 

  4. Klaus and Rolf Staeck, conversation with Luke Smythe, 13th March, 2014. 

  5. Ibid.   

Wolfgang Feelisch, VICE-Versand, Remscheid

In 1966 Wolfgang Feelisch established a publishing house called VICE-Versand, in the Rheinland city of Remscheid. Convinced of art’s social and educational value, Feelisch sought to extend these benefits to a wide audience, by publishing multiples in unlimited editions and selling them inexpensively by mail order. He took his inspiration from several sources, including Fluxus multiples, the cover designs of pocket paperbacks, and the 1968 student movement, which demanded the reform of educational institutions.1 The best known of Beuys’s VICE-Versand multiples is Intuition (1968), 1000s of copies of which were produced in his life-time. Initially costing just a few Deutschmarks and still available for purchase at a modest price at the time of his death, this work came closest to fulfilling Feelisch’s ideal of distributing works of art as democratically as possible.

  1. For a comprehensive overview of Vice Versand’s history, see Peter Schmieder,, Unlimitiert. Der VICE-Versand von Wolfgang Feelisch. Unlimitierte Multiples in Deutschland. Kommentiertes Editionsverzeichnis der Multiples von 1967 bis in die Gegenwart (Köln: Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, 1998). See also Kerstin Skrobanek et. al., ‘Konsum statt Kommerz. Der Vice-Versand von Wolfgang Feelisch,’ in Heinz Beck et al., Gut aufgelegt: Die Sammlung Heinz Beck, anlässlich der Ausstellung Gut aufgelegt. Die Sammlung Heinz Beck, 7. Juni bis 25. August 2013, Wilhelm-Hack-Museum Ludwigshafen am Rhein (Köln: Wienand Verlag, 2013), 122–129.