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Havana Biennial 2019: Constructing the Possible Ocula Report Havana Biennial 2019: Constructing the Possible 17 Apr 2019 : Federica Bueti for Ocula

I first visited Havana in November 2016, a few days after Fidel Castro died, and just under a year before Hurricane Irma hit Cuba in September 2017. Since then, much has changed, including the hand-painted signs that punctuate the journey from the airport to the city centre, which today do not celebrate the revolution so much as the 'Unidad y...

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Andrew Stahl and Guo Xiaohui Ocula Conversation Andrew Stahl and Guo Xiaohui

The exhibition Beyond Boundaries at Somerset House in London (12 March–2 April 2019) marked the historic contributions of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing (CAFA) and the Slade School of Fine Art, University College London, on the occasion of their 100th and 150th anniversaries, respectively. Spread across several rooms of Somerset House's...

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The National 2019: New Australian Art Ocula Report The National 2019: New Australian Art 13 Apr 2019 : Elyse Goldfinch for Ocula

The National 2019: New Australian Art features work by 70 contemporary Australia-based artists split across three venues: the Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW), Carriageworks, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA) (29 March–21 July 2019), as curated by Isobel Parker Philip, curator of photographs at AGNSW; Daniel Mudie Cunningham,...

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Paul McCarthy

b. 1945, USA

During his 30-plus year career, Paul McCarthy (b.1954) has continually developed an utterly original and challenging oeuvre to become one of the most influential contemporary artists today. By working across and integrating various media-- video, installations, performance, sculpture and photography, he brutally undermines the saccharine myths and figures of contemporary culture by re-focusing them through his own extremist lens. This video compilation, The Black and White Tapes 1970-1975 gives DAFT its historical foundation. These videos showcase McCarthy’s earliest performance works and reveal the nascent development of the themes that mark the artist’s later works. In these videos McCarthy uses his own body as a tool to examine the process of making art: as a human paintbrush he drags himself across the floor while holding an open can of white paint; he violently whips the walls and pillars of his studio with a large paint-soaked sheet; often the artist uses his naked body, body parts, and body fluids in conceptual exercises. These performative acts can be overtly confrontational, as when he repeatedly spits directly onto the camera lens. Other pieces involve more subtle contradictions and inversions of objects, motion, light and shadow. Mccarthy’s work is characterized by transgressive performance art, psychosexual events that are intended to fly in the face of social convention, testing the emotional limits of both artist and viewer. McCarthy’s challenging pieces have captivated audiences worldwide and he is one of the most celebrated and recognized living artists. He has exhibited at prominent museums including: The Museum of Modern Art, New York, The Tate Modern, London, The Guggenheim Museum, New York and Bilbao, The Centre George Pompidou, Paris, The Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin, The New Museum, New York, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, and The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.

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Featured Artworks

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White Snow Erotic Series #1,2,3 (working title) by Paul McCarthy contemporary artwork Paul McCarthyWhite Snow Erotic Series #1,2,3 (working title), 2014–2018 Clay, armature wire, wood, urethane resin
182.9 x 121.9 x 61 cm
Xavier Hufkens
White Snow Dwarf Head 5 - Original by Paul McCarthy contemporary artwork Paul McCarthyWhite Snow Dwarf Head 5 - Original, 2010–2018 Clay, wood, foam, steel, urethane resin
167.6 x 127 x 96.5 cm
Xavier Hufkens
White Snow Dwarf 4 - Original by Paul McCarthy contemporary artwork Paul McCarthyWhite Snow Dwarf 4 - Original, 2010–2018 Clay, steel, wood, foam, urethane resin
212.1 x 128.9 x 129.5 cm
Xavier Hufkens
White Snow Dwarf Head 1 - Original (working title) by Paul McCarthy contemporary artwork Paul McCarthyWhite Snow Dwarf Head 1 - Original (working title), 2009–2018 Carbon fibre (pink)
172.7 x 129.5 x 121.9 cm
Xavier Hufkens
Paula Jones by Paul McCarthy contemporary artwork Paul McCarthyPaula Jones, 2007 Fibreglass, steel, paint
208.3 x 146 x 271.8 cm
Xavier Hufkens
Captain Ballsack by Paul McCarthy contemporary artwork Paul McCarthyCaptain Ballsack, 2001 Fibreglass (pale yellow)
327.7 x 182.9 x 184.2 cm
Xavier Hufkens
Piggies by Paul McCarthy contemporary artwork Paul McCarthyPiggies, 2008 Carbon fibre (pink)
186.4 x 189.9 x 133 cm
Xavier Hufkens
Pressure Plate by Paul McCarthy contemporary artwork Paul McCarthyPressure Plate, 1991 (2014) Cibachrome on aluminium
122 x 183 cm
Hauser & Wirth

Current & Recent Exhibitions

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Contemporary art exhibition, Paul McCarthy, Mixed Bag at Xavier Hufkens, Brussels
Opening Soon
24 April–25 May 2019 Paul McCarthy Mixed Bag Xavier Hufkens, 6 rue St-Georges, Brussels
Contemporary art exhibition, Paul McCarthy, Mixed Bag at Xavier Hufkens, Brussels
Opening Soon
25 April–25 May 2019 Paul McCarthy Mixed Bag Xavier Hufkens, 107 rue St-Georges, Brussels
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Tables, Carpets & Dead Flowers at Hauser & Wirth, Zurich
Closed
17 November–21 December 2018 Group Exhibition Tables, Carpets & Dead Flowers Hauser & Wirth, Zürich

Represented By

In Related Press

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Paul McCarthy puts Snow White (and himself) under the knife in Seoul Related Press Paul McCarthy puts Snow White (and himself) under the knife in Seoul Wallpaper* : 2 October 2017

Snow White was the original, archetypal Disney princess: she was the 'fairest of them all', she was cheerful and kind, and most importantly, she was as innocent as a lamb. Just as her allegorical name would suggest. Since Disney's 1937 film adaptation of the Brothers Grimm fairytale, she's remained one of the company's most popular characters....

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Shard lines: sculptor Sarah Sze makes a sharp turn to glass at Berengo Studio in Murano Related Press Shard lines: sculptor Sarah Sze makes a sharp turn to glass at Berengo Studio in Murano Wallpaper* : 11 May 2017

Sze has made her name with complex, large-scale installations using mundane found objects that often seem in a state of disintegration or coalescence, driven by forces largely unknown. Her works tackle time, memory, loss, the taxonomic urge and the distance between science and experience. 'A piece is finished when it is right at the edge of...

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Absent Snow White: Paul McCarthy at Hauser & Wirth, New York Related Press Absent Snow White: Paul McCarthy at Hauser & Wirth, New York ARTNews : 3 December 2016

You put the kids to bed, and you look around the room. What you see is either a battlefield or a junkyard. Toy sets are broken up, G.I Joe is consorting with Barbie, other action figures are dead, and you wince as you stomp on another Lego piece.Not quite as chaotic, but much more fun is Paul McCarthy’s show, which fills up Hauser &...

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Flying suitcases, mimes, and a collector's house: A quick spin through the Unlimited Section at Basel Related Press Flying suitcases, mimes, and a collector's house: A quick spin through the Unlimited Section at Basel ARTNews : 14 June 2016

The Unlimited sector of Art Basel is devoted to large-scale installation and works that “transcend the classical art show stand.” The name is a hyperbole—as it does contain walls at some points—but it can really appear endless when you first walk in. And the works inside are very, very big. That is the point of the whole...

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