Widow Takes Beuys-Boozers to Court

Museum Kunstpalast Düsseldorf Photo: Raimond Spekking via WikimediaCommons
Museum Kunstpalast Düsseldorf Photo: Raimond Spekking via Wikimedia Commons

Eva Beuys, the widow of Joseph Beuys has changed her tune about the trio of artists who used the remnants of her late husband’s Fettecke (1982) to make schnapps.

Despite telling Bild on Wednesday that she had no interest in pursuing legal action against the artists—Markus Löffler, Andree Korpys, and Dieter Schmal—she has now retained the services of German art lawyer extraordinaire, Peter Raue.

According to the subsequent report by the paper on Thursday evening, Beuys has asked Raue’s firm to explore whether the action constitutes a form of copyright infringement on her late husband.

She hopes to force Düsseldorf’s Museum Kunstpalast to remove the bottle of the allegedly parmesan-cheese-tasting booze from their exhibition Art and Alchemy. Upon seeing the bottle used to hold the schnapps, Bild says Beuys compared it to a preserving jar. 

The museum’s director Beat Wismer told the paper that they respect Beuys’ decision to consult a lawyer about the performance and the resulting bottle on view. However, they hold that the remains of a destroyed sculpture such as Fettecke can no longer be considered art.

A museum spokesperson said that he regrets not having invited Beuys to the performance but said that it was an open event for which no invitations were sent out.

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