Four years on from the Meese Haute Couture series and the tribute it paid to Karl Lagerfeld, Jonathan Meese makes a spectacular return to Paris with Doctor-Doc-Dr.-„High Noon“ Is Back! (Wonderland De Large), an extravagant exhibition delving into the power of tales and legends.

The names of a litany of heroes, from Alice in Wonderland, the Wizard of Oz, Little Red Riding Hood and the Three Little Pigs to the Smurfs, the Loch Ness monster, Fantômas and Parsifal jump out at us, becoming the standard bearers for a new vision of art. The paintings teem with material, now dripping off the canvas, now crushed to the point of no return, fusing visions of childhood with calls for revolution. Tales, myths and legends are the glue that binds collective culture. And for Jonathan Meese, they are the crucible where the Western imagination is forged as well as a vital source of inspiration in his practice: “Without fairy tales, we wouldn’t be able to build the future,” he says. “The whole world is a fairy tale, the future is in some way our wonderful world. We have a role to play in this all-powerful future. And art determines the future. Art is all powerful.”

Over the last twenty or so years Meese has developed an uncategorizable body of work, lying somewhere between expressionism and actionism, combining painting, sculpture, installations and performance. His work questions the boundary between culture and nature, creativity and conformism, appearance and power, proposing a singular philosophy where art alone can serve as our guide to the evolving world.

Jonathan Meese was born in Tokyo in 1970 and lives and works in Berlin and Ahrensburg. His work has featured in numerous international exhibitions since he first exhibited in Berlin and at the Berlin Biennale in 1998. He has taken part in various major group shows such as Generation Z at PS1 in New York (1999), New Blood at the Saatchi Collection in London (2004) and Dionysiac at the Pompidou Centre in Paris (2005). The Deichtorhallen in Hamburg and Magasin de Grenoble organised a retrospective of his work in 2006: Mama Johnny. Other notable exhibitions of his work include those held at the Miami MOCA (2011), Akademie der Künste in Vienna (2012), Prague National Gallery (2015), Kunsthistoriches Museum in Vienna (2017), Carré Sainte-Anne in Montpellier ( 2017) and Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich (2018). In 2019, the artist took the Dr Zuhause: K.U.N.S.T (Erzliebe) project to Lübeck where it occupied all the city’s exhibition spaces. In 2022, in collaboration with young artist Conny Maier, he put together a large-scale exhibition entitled Hansel and Gretel (Let me in Ruh’) in Aurich, Germany.