At the URL listed above Friedhelm Mennekes has collected insights regarding Joseph Beuys, and his work Manresa (Ignatius of Loyola). Mennekes has described the relation between art and religion found not just in the work of Beuys, but in other art as well. In 2002 Mennekes was awarded the Wilhelm-Hausenstein-Medal of the Bavarian Academy of the Fine Arts, Munich, “for his outstanding achievement in the field of promoting visual arts“.
Mennekes has been engaged in many discussions with artists through exhibitions and lectures that address this vital relationship of creative expression and experienced religion. These encounters are documented in print in a multitude of catalogue contributions, essays and monographs that discuss individuals such as Donald Baechler, Joseph Beuys, Christian Boltanski, James Brown, James Lee Byars, Francis Bacon, Eduardo Chillida, Marlene Dumas, Jenny Holzer, Anish Kapoor, Barbara Kruger, Arnulf Rainer, David Salle, Cindy Sherman, Antoni Tàpies, Rosemarie Trockel, and Bill Viola among others. Mennekes poses systematic questions, addressing individual works and also their vital relationship to the broader world of contemporary culture. He seeks structural correspondences and parallels that address our experience of faith and doubts in organized religion, as well as the secular world. Above all, however, he shows through over one hundred interviews with artists that their work is not simply dealing with private convictions of a personal nature, but with large issues that relate to all kinds of people striving to live a meaningful life.
OBSERVATION: It is necessary to understand that art may contain insight and meaning beyond the mundane. Many artists have worked to demonstrate the potential of human thought and action.
The potential (action), that we find in the work of Joseph Beuys, is the path that leads to full participation in the mystery of humanity.