Enclosure for Pygmy Hippo & OkapiSculptures & Installations
430 x 1250 x 2700 cm
wood, glass, tiles and lighting
Meuris devised two large ‘cage sculptures’ for his ‘Artificially Deconstructed’ exhibition at De Bond, an art exhibition space in Bruges. The exhibition circuit starts at the back, on the right, at the glass home of a dwarf hippopotamus and then goes to the left, where we see an open cage intended for an okapi. It is striking that Meuris actively involves the entire space and its existing functions, including the toilets and emergency exits, in his sculptures, and vice versa. As a consequence we do not experience art objects standing detached in the space, but rather an ‘all-inclusive installation’ within which the spectator moves with apparent freedom. These works are examples of an exploration of isolated objects, whereas the cages can be said to be a systematic analysis of various types and applications. In addition to the incisive study of the architectural aspects, Meuris turns his gaze beyond the physical boundaries and typology of the animal cage. Just as in a zoo or other scientific institution, he hangs extremely credible information panels above the caged animals next to his sculptures. They give the Latin name for the animal, various items of scientific data and a map of the world showing the original habitat.