German artist Joseph Beuys created ‘King’s Daughter Sees Iceland’ in 1960 in the Neo-Dada style. Beuys was known for his diverse body of work that ranged from traditional media of drawing, painting, and sculpture to process-oriented or time-based “action” art. He firmly believed that art was a vehicle for revolutionary social transformation.
The artwork is a watercolor and oil on paper, on felt, under glass in a metal frame. The piece depicts a person gazing over what appears to be an icy landscape with small patches of greenery. The figure is surrounded by text written in black ink and seems to be deep in thought. Some believe that the text contains religious references, while others interpret it as commentary on societal issues.
Beuys’s work often tackled philosophical themes and promoted potential reform within society. ‘King’s Daughter Sees Iceland’ is no exception as its subject matter could represent humanity searching for connection to nature or exploring their innermost thoughts. This piece reflects the artist’s belief that art should encourage critical thinking about society’s issues and inspire social transformation.