This chapter discusses the Buddhist concepts of enlightenment and the “rainbow body” in conjunction with Beuys’ possibly fictional encounter with “Tartar nomads,” which, upon further geologic considerations, meant that he’d more likely met with Tibetan Buddhists. Such an experience would later shape Beuys’ perspectives on art—particularly with the use of felt, which he claims the nomads have used on him to keep him insulated, and which he would later use as a metaphor for his “colorful” work with which to present as an anti-image. While this chance encounter at first appears disconnected from his life’s work and ideologies, Beuys’ emphasis on Eastern philosophy later in life aptly illustrates the persistent threads of interhuman intrigue woven into the fabric of life.
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