Raqib Shaw





Press release

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac is pleased to present a series of new bronze sculptures by Raqib Shaw in the Annex space at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Salzburg.

Meticulously cast by the traditional "lost wax" casting method at the revered AB Foundry in England, at first glance Shaw's new sculptures resemble Late-Mannerist bronzes from the Renaissance. However on closer inspection, these tangled groups of perfectly honed male figures that dance, wrestle and contort with each other have the heads of vampire bats, loins of skulls, jaws of fantastical beasts and leather gear and boots from today's clubs.

As art historian Caroyln Miner writes in The Maniera of Raqib Shaw : "Like the Mannerist sculptors, Shaw has made his figures, lithe, sinuous and slightly elongated or stretched, especially the necks and limbs... [he] has also aimed to delight and surprise the spectator by incorporating inventive and playful motifs. The bizarre combinations of heads of beasts and genital of toothy jaws are much like the grotesque beasts in Mannerist bronzes."

True to his signature style, Shaw presents us with radical images that are on the one hand, deeply informed by art historical references and on the other hand, of such grotesque and erotic beauty that our imagination is lead to its utmost limit.


In 1998, Raqib Shaw left his native India and Kashmir for London, where he studied and still lives today. He graduated from London’s Central Saint Martins College, and has since presented his work within group exhibitions, including “Without Boundary” at the MoMA in New York (2006), “Around the World in Eighty Days” at the ICA in London (2006), the Suntory Museum in Osaka, Japan (2009), the 17th Biennale in Sydney (2010),  the 7th Asia Pacific Triennal in Brisbane (2012) and in the “Summer Exhibition” at the Royal Academy in London (2012). His recent solo exhibitions include a show at the Metropolitan Museum in New York (2008), at the Kunsthalle in Vienna (2009) and the Manchester Art Gallery (2013).