© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2019

Christchurch's Mueck million

George Clark
Chicken/man Mueck
Ron Mueck's chicken/man 2019 Supplied: Christchurch City Council (Anthony d’Offay)

Christchurch Art Gallery welcomes back Ron Mueck, with a specifically commissioned piece.


After months of anticipation, a mystery artwork made by one of the world’s most renowned sculptors has opened for the first time at Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu. 

Ron Mueck, an Australian born artist, was commissioned to create a piece of art specifically for the gallery.

The $1 million piece is the final in a series of five major artworks for the Garden City, fundraised and purchased through the Christchurch Art Gallery Foundation to mark the five year long closure post earthquakes.

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Blair Jackson, Director of Christchurch Art Gallery George Clark

“Mueck has only made 40 pieces. This being his 41st... we are very lucky,” said Anita Paris, visitor host at Christchurch Art Gallery.

All five pieces of art have been purchased with support from the gallery's foundation and private donations across the Christchurch community.

Muecks popular exhibition in late 2010 attracted more than 135,000 paying visitors.

"He is an artist with a significant track record... Mueck presented a highly successful exhibition here from late 2010 to early 2011, which is still the gallery's most visited exhibition" says Te Puna o Waiwhetu Director Blair Jackson. 

The 61 year old London based artist is renowned for creating super-realistic sculptures.

"'I'm utterly transfixed by it, I can't look away from it," said Peter Green, a visiting tourist from Australia and frequent art consumer.

"It's like it's suspended animation... still life. The detail is so realistic. It really is amazing."

Art Mueck
Christchurch Art Gallery punters take a closer look at Ron Mueck's sculpture Chicken/Man. George Clark

Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu is open daily from 10am to 5pm. On Wednesday’s the gallery is open until 9pm.