The installation of César's "Pouce" in Souq Waqif continues the program of installations by major artists at unexpected locations throughout Qatar.
Bronze with gold patina
The installation of César's "Pouce" in Souq Waqif continues the program of installations by major artists at unexpected locations throughout Qatar. The location of Souq Waqif was selected by Qatar Museums for Pouce to act as a landmark of modern art in the heart of the city, combing the traditional with the contemporary. The exact location was chosen because of its intimacy at a crossroads, emphasising the scale of the work in relation to the surrounding buildings and the juxtaposition of the sculpture on the streetscape of cafes. At night, the highly polished bronze patina of the sculpture will complement the glow of street lighting at this site, and during the day the work will be visible from numerous angles and street views. As such the work at this location becomes an important marker, a familiar spot where people will agree to meet. It will also provide an important location for tourists and visitors, and will become a stop within public art tours that reflect upon both the art and the diverse public spaces of the city.
César Baldaccini (1921-1998) was born of Italian parents in Marseilles, France. He was an important figure in the French 1960s art movement Noveau Réalisme, emphasizing the use of everyday objects over traditional art materials.
The original cast of the artist’s own thumb was first produced for an exhibition on the theme of hands titled ‘Le Main’ in 1965, in Paris. The artist then made a series of increasingly larger versions of the thumb, scaling-up the smaller model using traditional techniques. The motif of the thumb has since become the most well-known of the artist’s subjects.