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Mueck moved to London to establish his own company, creating props and “animatronics” for the advertising industry. In spite of being highly detailed their works, they were designed to be photographed from a very specific angle, thus hiding the disorder of the work seen from another angle. Mueck more and more often wanted to produce sculptures that look perfect from any angle.
In 1996 Mueck switched to the “other side” collaborating with his mother-in-law Paula Rego, to produce small figures as part of a scene she was showing at the Hayward Gallery. Rego introduced him to Charles Saatchi who was immediately surprised by his work and began to collect and request jobs. This led him to the creation that gave Mueck a name, “Dead Dad” (dead dad) which is a chilling and hyperrealistic work of silicone and other materials, of his father’s dead body, reduced to approximately two thirds of life size . It is the only work of Mueck that uses its own hair for the final product.
Mueck’s sculptures reproduce intimate parts of the human body, but play with the scale to create images that shake us.
His five-meter work “Boy” was shown in 1999 at the “Millenium Dome” and was later on shown at the “Venice Biennale”.
This sculptor was part of the “Sensation” exhibition that caused controversy and other extreme reactions between critics and the public. The piece he exhibited on that occasion was “Dead Dad.” That exhibition also included other “new” British artists such as Damien Hirst and the brothers Jake and Dinos Chapman, who carry their work to extremes that are definitely shocking.
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