Ron Mueck at Triennale Milano

Hyper Realism & Reflections on Contemporary Atrocities

Yesterday, our journey led us to experience Ron Mueck at Triennale Milano: his first solo exhibition, in collaboration with the ‘Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain.’

Unfortunately, we missed the inaugural event. So, looking for something interesting beyond our never-ending festive family meals, we headed straight to Triennale. This experience gave us a chance to reflect on the atrocities of our time. Indeed, it served as a poignant metaphor for Christmas 2023. While the world celebrates, Palestine, under bombing attacks, is teetering on the edge of extinction.

Art installations possess a unique force: they provoke contemplation, stirring emotions even more amid silence. In fact, this art exhibition was an evocative call to reflect on our present-day existence. Most importantly, the inhumanity prevailing within it.

Ron Mueck: hyper-realistic sculptures at Triennale Milano

The exhibit comprised six sculptures, each a vivid narrative in its own right. ‘Mass’ (2017) a towering assemblage of a hundred oversized human skulls. ‘In Bed’ (2005) depicts an immense woman seemingly fraught with anxiety. ‘Woman with Sticks’ (2009), a middle-aged woman bent backwards, struggling to hold a bundle of sticks twice her size. ‘This Little Piggy’ (2023) a composition capturing subjects engaged in the slaughtering of a pig, a yet unfinished creation emblematic of the artist’s evolving style. ‘En Garde’ (2023), three colossal dogs in varied poses, and ‘Baby’ (2023), a tiny newborn suspended on the wall.

Ron Mueck
‘Mass’ by Ron Mueck

Art: a mirror that reflects humanity

These sculptures, diverse in size and form, possess an evocative power, stirring deep empathy. Mueck’s meticulous craftsmanship, evident in the intricate details and nuanced use of colour, rendered these works hyper-realistic. They were undeniably captivating yet also unsettling, compelling us to confront our perceptions of reality.

Walking among the installations provided an immersive experience, both physical and visual, that touched us profoundly. Of all the sculptures, ‘Mass’ left the most haunting impression.

Contemplating ‘Mass’ by Ron Mueck at Triennale Milano felt like a metaphor for the atrocities of our era: stark imagery that mirrors the dissonance of this year’s Christmas.
While Christmas traditionally embodies sentiments of love, peace, and generosity, the atmosphere of Christmas 2023 felt incredibly strange and somewhat hypocritical. Celebrating the nativity seems pointless when the very birthplace has been ravaged. And over 7,000 children have been killed.

Among such devastation, what does the world truly celebrate? Merry what?

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