For his second solo exhibition at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac’s Paris Marais gallery Raqib Shaw exhibited a series of new bronze sculptures and paintings. Meticulously cast using the traditional “lost wax” method at the revered AB Foundry in England, Shaw’s new sculptures, at first glance, resemble Late-Mannerist bronzes from the Renaissance. However on closer inspection, these tangled groups of perfectly honed male figures that dance, wrestle and contort with each other have the heads of vampire bats, loins of skulls, jaws of fantastical beasts and leather gear and boots from today’s night clubs. The four paintings in the upper gallery are based on works belonging to London’s National Gallery. Three of which are self-portraits: one “after Steenwyck”, one “after Antonello da Messina” and the third “after Mocetto” showing the artist either in his study or studio. Although his own image is never a straight forward self portrait, by depicting myriads of objects of great personal significance such as his adored dogs, specific views from his studio’s window, champagne bottles and even his new bronze sculptures, the overall images become stagings of the self.
In July 2015 the exhibition toured to Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Salzburg, where it was reimagined for the Annex space at Villa Kast.
Installation photographed by Philippe Servent, courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London · Paris · Salzburg.
Artworks photographed by Stephen White and Prudence Cuming Associates Ltd.