French sculptor's witty take on animals

SHINE
Daniel Daviau's signature style, which integrates the body shapes of different animals, translates his ideas into a gentle and witty expression.
SHINE
Ti Gong

French artist Daniel Daviau’s animal sculptures are displayed at two separate venues in Shanghai.

French artist Daniel Daviau’s signature style, which integrates the body shapes of different animals, translates his ideas into a gentle and witty expression.

His works are now displayed in Shanghai through August 24. Entitled "Animal Beauty," the exhibition at two separate venues features up to 40 sculptures.

For example, he gives the hippopotamus a sweet, gentle, well-intentioned appearance that children want to embrace, while the rhinoceros under his brush appears warrior-like.

Animals have always been an important theme in the history of art — from the vivid single-line depictions of France’s prehistoric Lascaux Caves to the subjective imageries of animals in the medieval era and the groundbreaking animal-oriented creations during the Renaissance. 

Ti Gong

"Hippopotamus"

Ti Gong

"Lovebirds"

Since the 19th century, France has been home to many animal art masters who have brought new possibilities to the theme. 

The outbreak of World War I compelled great masters, such as Ettore Bugatti and Francoise Pompon, to further break traditions and start to portray the sensitivity and fragility of animals. 

Standing on the shoulders of his predecessors, Daviau attempts to depict the characteristics of different animals with his unique language and humor. 

Through the hidden human perspective in the works, he challenges the viewer to ponder over the role of people in the natural environment and animal survival, raising concerns for a more balanced world.

In an attempt to present the most complete Daviau to a Chinese audience, “Part I — Galerie Dumonteil” consists of non-monumental works reviewing the artist’s career in the past three decades — from his early works to the most recent golden snub-nosed monkey specially dedicated to the Chinese audience. 

Among the six monumental pieces in “Part II — Xiyunlou,” the beloved “Hippo” series including “Hippopotamus” (2013), “Barnaby” (2017) and “Titipo” (2016) will be exhibited as a complete series for the very first time.

Ti Gong

"Barnaby"

Ti Gong

"Scratching Bear"

Exhibition details

• Part I
Date: Through July 28 (closed on Mondays), 11am-7pm
Venue: Galerie Dumonteil Shanghai
Address: Bldg 105, 199 Hengshan Rd

• Part II
Date: Through August 24, 11am-7pm
Venue: Xiyunlou
Address: Bldg 1, 388 Hongde Rd

Special Reports
Top