This Man Lived Inside a Bear for 2 Weeks
French artist Abraham Poincheval just spent two weeks inside a bear… OK, it was a stuffed bear… but that doesn’t make it any less bizarre. Perhaps the only part of this that isn’t completely wacky, is that he did it at the Hunting and Wildlife Museum in Paris.
This is actually the second time the performance artist has spent a fortnight inside a bear carcass, the first time happening last year at the CAIRN Centre for Contemporary Art in Digne. In each case he’s had a self-sufficient system built inside the bear allowing him to eat, drink, sleep and, ehem, relieve himself within the tiny chamber… all while being filmed by two cameras.
Answering the obvious question “WHY??” is a bit challenging. Symbolically Poincheval looks at his performance, called Dans La Peau de l’Ours (Inside the Skin of the Bear) as an act that signifies a rebirth, rite of passage and a journey from the world of the dead into that of the living. Further it acts as a significant challenge. How would he cope with being confined to such a small space for such a long time? If any of his previous performances (including staying in an underground hole beneath a bookshop in his home Marseille) are an indicator, we think he’s safe from claustrophobia.