‘Claudia’ The Lazy Cow (Montreal, Quebec)


‘Claudia’ by Joe Fafard is perhaps one of the greatest sculptures of a cow on the planet. Resting on a small patch of grass, Claudia seems ready to fall asleep in the late afternoon sun. Created in 2003, Claudia has been part of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts outdoor sculpture collection since.

Joe Fafard was born in Sainte-Marthe, Saskatchewan in 1942, and is considered one of the most original Canadian artists of his generation. With a background in folk-art ceramics, Fafard was an important part of the 1970s art movement in Canada and the United States. Over time his artwork started to embrace more refined sculptural techniques and a slow move to bronze casting lead to the opening of his own foundry in 1985. The move from ceramics to bronzes, and the transition to more lifelike representations of large animals like horses and cows helped to make Fafard one of Canada’s most well respected artists.

Seven of Fafard’s other large cow sculptures make up a single giant sculpture called The Pasture, which stands on the central lawn of the Toronto-Dominion Centre. The Pasture has been greeting thousands daily since 1985.

Claudia Facts

  • Claudia lives outside the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal.
  • The Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal was founded in 1860, and is Canada’s oldest art institution.
  • Claudia was purchased by the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts’ Volunteer Association Fund.
  • Claudia’s dimensions are 274.32 x 106.68 x 121.92 cm.
  • The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts is the most visited attraction in Montreal.