A Private Art Foundation in Paris

Art Privee
Apr 21, 2013 10:29PM

Renown sculptor Ron Mueck is showing at the Cartier Foundation through September 29. 

The exhibition opens with Mueck’s sculpture of two giant elderly people, “Couple Under an Umbrella,” which takes over the entire first gallery space. His meticulously crafted human forms are so realistic down to the smallest details—the toenails, the hair on their legs, their haunting facial expressions—they are mesmerizing.     

“Woman with Sticks,” a small nude bending backward grimaces under the weight of a bundle of sticks, a burden she can barely carry—a metaphor for life. It’s almost primeval in that we all have our burdens to bear.      

“Woman with Shopping” is an emotional portrait of a young street woman with a baby strapped to her chest, carrying two plastic shopping bags full of stuff. As horrifying it is to see the woman’s tired blank stare, the baby’s upward gaze toward his mother shows its longing for a human connection. The artist himself saw the scene in the street and was inspired to create the piece.  

A departure from Mueck’s typical style, “Drift” is presented on the wall, it’s smaller than human scale, and the figure’s sunglasses create a barrier between the viewer and the subject. With his arms extended and its placement above eye-level, one could reference Christ on the cross—an unexpected association for a piece depicting a man floating on a raft in a blue pool.   

Downstairs, the 55-minute Gautier Deblonde video showing Ron Mueck at work is fascinating—it shows how complex and how time-consuming each sculpture is to create. This small nine-piece show is one you’ll always remember and if you’re in Paris, it is a must-see art experience.  

Find more information about the Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art in our Directory: http://

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Jenna Gribbon, Luncheon on the grass, a recurring dream, 2020. Jenna Gribbon, April studio, parting glance, 2021. Jenna Gribbon, Silver Tongue, 2019