2023 edition
Place du Commerce
The Humans
Olaf Breuning

Olaf Breuning’s work has been shown all over the world, with exhibitions in the most prestigious institutions.


For his contribution to Le Voyage à Nantes, he takes over Place du Commerce with a set of 6 sculptures in Carrara marble and bronze elements: Half Fish Half Monkey, Mouse, Venus, Religion, Rock, and King.

Using the same visual codes as those for emojis, Breuning’s characters express perplexity and distress. With their simple smiles curved downwards, they are both transfigured and clearly pathetic, conveying age-old stereotypes.

After being displayed in Place du Commerce as part of this year’s edition, these sculptures will be made permanent fixtures in another outdoor part of the city.

Olaf Breuning was born in 1970 in Schaffhausen (Switzerland) and now lives and works in New York. He is represented by Nils Staerk Gallery, Copenhagen; Carbon12 Gallery, Dubai; Von Bartha Gallery, Basel.