Belgian waxwork

In Leopoldmuseum, Vienna you can visit the exhibition „Suture“ by the belgian sculptress Berlinde de Bruyckere.

The name of Berlinde de Bruyckere is well known since the Biennale of 2003 and at the moment, she is one of the most famous sculptors alive. „Suture“ is her first solo exhibition in Vienna and, just like most of de Bruyckere`s work, it is all about the beauty and vulnerability of the human body.

The exhibits are mostly waxwork that explores the corpse in different positions and emotions in a kind of abstract way. The figures poses generate almost physical pain and an intimacy that is barely bearable.


The sculptures are asking about the relation between life and death, their intimacy and provocation are often even repulsive. One part of the exhibition is, for exemple, a horse sewed out of animal skin. Another one is a piece out of riding tools made from leather and some body parts out of wax.

So, the „seam“ which gives this exhibition its name, is literally part of the bits and pieces the artist is forcing together as well, as it is part of the frontiers, de Bruyckere is showing and surpassing. A seam is also a symbol for something, that was cut open and fixed again, so all that remains as scar are the stitches. You see, the artists work and the title of the exhibition are giving great oppurtunities for interpretation.

You could describe „Suture“ as intimidating, an exhibition one has to get used to. I can imagine that de Bruyckere`s art is not made for everybody. The sort of existential touch to her work is neither pretty nor pleasant, but it can strike a chord, if you are willing to give it a try.

The exhibition is still on until 5th of september 2016 in Leopoldmuseum.

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