Eyeless, and sometimes headless, deformed horses are the subject of Berlinde De Bruckere's art. These pseudo-anatomical works inspire both a sense of nightmarish displacement and of visual comfort, of animal suffering and material abstraction. The glossiness of their skin underscores all of the things that are covered and hidden, a sensual, almost tender casing for these uncomfortable shapes.
Shapes which came alive in 2000 for an exhibition in the In Flanders Fields museum. In this case, the fallen horses are a commentary on World War I: the great power of life drained of its essential movement. Visually strong pieces that are dealing with issues of loneliness, pain and death. So strong that the sculptures were shown in the Italian Pavilion during the 2003 Venice Biennale, gaining international acclaim.
And don't worry, although these sculptures are made from real horses, which De Bruyckere selected for their shapes when living, they are only used after their deaths from natural causes. No animal cruelty here!