Urs Fischer - New Now London Wednesday, April 10, 2019 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Galerie Eva Presenhuber, Zurich
    Acquired from the above by the present owner

  • Exhibited

    Zurich, Galerie Eva Presenhuber, Urs Fischer: Large, Dark & Empty, 8 September - 17 November 2007
    Berlin, Burger Collection, Zimmerstrasse 90-91, Conflicting Tales: Subjectivity (Quadrilogy, Part 1), 4 September - 13 December 2009
    Venice, Palazzo Grassi, Madame Fischer, 15 April - 15 July 2012 (another edition exhibited)
    Los Angeles, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Urs Fischer, 21 April - 19 August 2013 (another edition exhibited)
    New York, The Met Breuer, Like Life: Sculpture, Color, and the Body, 21 March - 22 July 2018

  • Literature

    Bice Curiger, Massimiliano Gioni and Jessica Morgan, Urs Fischer: Shovel in a Hole, New York, 2009, pp. 76, 227, 383 (another example illustrated, pp. 76, 383)

  • Catalogue Essay

    In The Grass Munchers, 2007, Urs Fischer has moulded his own arms and clavicle in aluminium, imparting the result with sporadic additions of hair and pigments. Three wax hands, variably hued and disembodied, clench either side of the replicated upper body, seemingly supporting or pulling it in different directions. A traditional motif in the history of art and a frequent element in Fischer’s oeuvre, hands are here spatially disruptive and disturbing. Floating mid-air like loose claws, they invoke a sentiment of uncanniness that is proper to the vision of false limbs and damaged bodies. This corporeal scene, profoundly unnatural yet realistically rendered, brilliantly encapsulates the crux of the artist’s oeuvre, and echoes the idea that ‘when flesh is still attached to bone in Fischer’s work, the body is placed under attack: it is melting, fractured, decapitated, and penetrated’ (Jessica Morgan, ‘If You Build Your House on a Bed of Rotting Vegetables,’ Urs Fischer: Shovel in a Hole, New York, 2009, p. 46). Enigmatic and open-ended, The Grass Munchers prescribes and even shuns a simple, complete narrative. In it, Fischer’s contemporary take on realism references a wealth of brilliant moments in art history, from classical Greek sculpture and ancient fragmented statuary, to Robert Gober’s loose, truncated legs.


The Grass Munchers

cast aluminium, pigments, pins, wax and hair
56 x 62 x 44 cm (22 x 24 3/8 x 17 3/8 in.)
Executed in 2007, this work is number 1 from an edition of 2 plus 1 artist’s proof and is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity signed by the artist.

£100,000 - 150,000 

Sold for £137,500

Contact Specialist
Simon Tovey
Head of Sale
+44 20 7318 4084

New Now

London Auction 11 April 2019