the Boy of ARoS

One of the most substantial works of art in the collection at ARoS, and the work that probably attracts most attention, is The Boy by the Australian artist Ron Muecks. It was first shown in the Millennium Dome in London but was purchased by ARoS in 2001. 

Families and groups of school children and students congregate around the giant sculpture and seem most curious about the pose of the boy - many squatting down to try and imitate his position. The details of the skin, hair, toenails and so on, at this gigantic surreal scale, is, quite literally, hugely impressive. However, I find the eyes and the expression of the face threatening and close to being sinister … it seems to me to be a look of only just-contained frustration and anger … a look that you see in the faces of primates, particularly gorillas, but also big cats and bears when they are constrained by a zoo cage … they seem to say just one step closer, another gibe, another poke and you’ll see just how powerful and dangerous I really am ….