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The surreal world of Les Lalanne takes over Venice

Les Lalanne’s surreal take on naturalism comes to the Venice Biennale 2024, with one of the largest exhibitions to date of works by the late artist couple Claude and François-Xavier Lalanne, bringing together more than 150 photographs, rare artworks and objects in the historic Palazzo Rota Ivancich.

‘Planète Lalanne’ sees the magical menagerie of Les Lalanne moving to Venice

goat sculpture, featured in the Planète Lalanne exhibition at the 2024 Venice Biennale

‘Planète Lalanne’, installation view, in Palazzo Rota Ivancich, Venice

(Image credit: Installation images courtesy of Ben Brown Fine Arts, London)

‘Planete Lalanne’, presented by Ben Brown Fine Arts, includes highlights such as the Sauterelle bar – one of three created by the artist duo, the other belonging to King Charles – and also unique Lit Hibou and 2 Tables de Chevet bed from Ben Brown’s personal collection. Claude’s lover is also here Choupettethe veined cabbage on chicken feet, a playful tribute to the natural themes running through it (and also evident in a collection of ‘lost’ Les Lalanne classics that we reviewed ahead of their sale by Sotheby’s in 2023).

animal sculptures in the palace, including a giant grasshopper bar

Sauterelle bar, ‘Planète Lalanne’, installation view, in Palazzo Rota Ivancich, Venice

(Image credit: Installation images courtesy of Ben Brown Fine Arts, London)

Works are placed around the palace in keeping with Les Lalanne’s desire to create fantastic works to live with, with otherworldly tables and chairs in the living rooms and the Hippopotamus I bath comes to rest in the bathroom, in a staging that adds a mythical magic to the traditionally decorative.

Lovers

sheep sculpture in palace

‘Planète Lalanne’, installation view, in Palazzo Rota Ivancich, Venice

(Image credit: Installation images courtesy of Ben Brown Fine Arts, London)

A version of this article appears in the Wallpaper May 2024*available in print from April 11 in the Wallpaper* app on Apple iOS, and to Apple News + subscribers. Subscribe to Wallpaper* today.