Paul McCarthy, ‘Untitled (from Propo-Series) (Mayonnaise, Petroleum Jelly)’, 2002, Elgiz Museum

About Paul McCarthy

Paul McCarthy is recognized for his provocative, some would say tasteless, performances, multi-media installations, and sculptures that irreverently fuse high and low culture in their biting but humorous critique of American mythology and accepted societal norms. Santa Claus porn videos, Hummel figurine parodies, and chocolate butt plugs are among McCarthy’s most well known pieces. For Train, Mechanical (2003-09), McCarthy created a pair of larger-than-life animated sculptures of George W. Bush mounting pigs from behind. “I'm interested in caricatures—from Miss Piggy to Popeye to Santa Claus—that are cultural fabrications,” McCarthy explains. “Santa is one that I've hung on to longer, that I repeat more. There's the whole thing of Christmas and consumption and commodity, and its relationship to capitalism and Western culture and Americana. The character itself is this roly-poly patriarch with a beard—almost a godlike figure.”

American, b. 1945, Salt Lake City, Utah, based in Los Angeles, California

Group Shows

2017
Beijing,
Virtual Reality Art
2017
New York,
Portable Art: A Project by Celia Forner
2013
NextLevel Galerie, 
Paris,

Fair History on Artsy

2017
Xavier Hufkens at Art Basel in Miami Beach 2017
2017
Hauser & Wirth at Art Basel in Miami Beach 2017
2017
Hauser & Wirth at Frieze London 2017
View Artist's CV