Ernst spent the summer of 1934 with the sculptor Alberto Giacometti in the Swiss village of Maloja. There, he carved and painted a group of oval river stones. Upon his return to Paris, Ernst continued to pursue his interest in sculpture, turning to plaster as his material of choice. The anatomical punning and oblique erotic allusion manifest in Lunar Asparagus typify Ernst’s work in three dimensions. The Museum acquired the original plaster version in 1937; it was later cast in bronze, at the artist’s request, and painted white to emulate plaster.
Gallery label from Max Ernst: Beyond Painting, September 23, 2017-January 1, 2018.