2009, Making Worlds
53rd International Art Exhibition: La Biennale di Venezia
June 7 – November 22, 2009
At the 2009 Venice Biennale, Mike Bouchet showed “Watershed,” a 250 square meter single-family house, which he floated in a Venice canal in an attempt to promote the suburbanization of water. For Bouchet, a suburban home is a commercialized architectural fantasy: dream houses sold in kits for the mass consumer.
2010, Mike Bouchet. New Living
July 1 – September 12, 2010
At the 2009 Venice Biennale, the artist showed the work “Watershed”, a single-family house floating in the basin of the Arsenale area of the Aperto. After the Biennale, it was dismantled for transport. Destroyed and transformed, this resulted in a new group of sculptures for the Schirn entitled Sir Walter Scott, which resulted in different conceptual concepts for new, visionary living situations.
The exhibition “New Living” is supplemented by other new works by the artist.
Chelsea, New York, USA
October 11 – November 29, 2013
The driving forces behind this show are manifold, but coalesce into an incisive critique of popular culture that nevertheless celebrates the strange effectiveness of its machinations. An important blueprint for the exhibition is Bouchet’s observation that Surrealism was rendered obsolete by the explosion of advertising in the middle of the last century—effectively outshining the artists with a more sophisticated and depraved dream-machine.
The paintings (made by spraying, soaking and staining huge swaths of sheer cotton with the artist’s proprietary diet cola formula) make direct use of the caramel-colored gold that is one of America’s greatest symbols of youth and freedom as well as its premier health risk—an exported analogue to crude oil.
2014, Powered A-Hole Spanish Donkey Sport Dick Drink Donkey Dong Dongs Sunscreen Model
February 14 – April 20, 2014
“Powered A-Hole Spanish Donkey Sport Dick Drink Donkey Dong Dongs Sunscreen Model” is a site-specific project for Portikus, developed by Mike Bouchet and Paul McCarthy.The center piece of the exhibition is a sculpture of the Guggenheim Bilbao, originally designed by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry. An over-scaled architectural model, this version of Bilbao is reminiscent of a battered, ragged warship that has washed up to the shores of the island after defeat. A long pipe extends upwards from the sculpture, through to the ceiling of the upper gallery. Here, hundreds of liters of liquid gummi are disposed of into the very core of the museum. This is also where the production of the A-Hole Sport Drink happens, a beef and banana flavored sports drink acting as a pseudo-exhibition sponsor through aggressive product placement. The drink is needed to create the adrenalin-boosting concoction The Bigga Picka Uppa—one liter of A-Hole with a Snickers bar dropped into it.
As part of the exhibition the artists also include over 150 paintings and a gigantic inflatable displaying Bilboa sunscreen lotion from Italy, Hollywood actors, star architects, as well as portraits of themselves.
April 29 – June 2, 2016
Peres Projects exhibited “Bounty” on the occasion of the Gallery Weekend Berlin 2016. Mike Bouchet presents a new series of oil paintings alongside an installation of large-scale glass sculptures.
With Bounty (a word which connotes a generous surplus of amounts), Bouchet investigates our society’s collective materialism and consumer habits within the aesthetic confines and supposed safe boundaries of painting. This new body of works on canvas is based on original photographs of collapsing human trash and waste taken by the artist at the municipal water treatment plant Werdhoelzli in Zurich. As vibrantly painted visual tableaux, Bouchet captures solid waste in the fragile instant before it is processed to become homogenous sludge.
2016, What People Do For Money
June 11 – September 18, 2016
At Manifesta 11 (2016) Mike Bouchet presented an 80 ton sculpture made of human sludge in the Migros Museum of Contemporary Art. The concept for Manifesta 11, “What People Do For Money”, hosted by the city of Zürich, was based on pairing an artist with a particular profession. Mike Bouchet had chosen to work with the city’s waste water treatment facility.
Chelsea, New York, USA
January 19 – February 25, 2017
Tender is a sculpture by Mike Bouchet and was exhibited at Marlborough Gallery in Chelsea, New York in 2017. Occupying the entire 45,000 cubic feet of gallery space, Tender is the synthesized fragrance of used US Dollar bills. Although invisible, the sculpture, in fact, fills every molecule of the space.
2018, More Zero
Galerie Parisa Kind
May 26 – June 23, 2018
Mike Bouchet’s series of Colachrome paintings are made with his self produced Diet Cola. Though the works cover a range of themes, what Bouchet is primarily working with is the immaterial cultural fabric that ties all of these themes together. Bouchet’s works are never didactic gestures, nor are they ironic or condescending. In addition to the Colachromes, the exhibition also presents new sculptures. The series of works, titled “Sylva Lounger,” which are made from cutting a shopping cart, and bending down the sides into a very comfortable and stylish piece of furniture.
The humor of all of these works bears witness to the underlying rigor of Bouchet’s longstanding engagement with the behavioural facets of today’s corporate consumer culture hegemony.
Galerie Parisa Kind
March 13 – April 24, 2021
For this exhibition at Galerie Parisa Kind, Mike Bouchet has developed an entirely new body of work based around a material he has been investigating for the last 10 years: candied gelatin.
These Red Bull flavored sculptures made from sugar and gelatin are mixed or coated with a product from the food industry that gives the sculptures a range of metallic colors and surfaces which then are cast or poured onto panels, table constructions or blue carpet.
The materiality of the candied gelatin objects play with our expectations of the object properties. Moreover, our perception is also put to the test in terms of the relationship between form and material, with many conflations between material states: hard and soft, edible and non-edible, fascination and repulsion. Although the exhibition strongly emphasizes formal relationships and modern processes, its main focus is on the sensual experience of materials, which the artist considers an essential and unique value of art in this contradictory world, and challenging times, characterized by complexity and confusion.