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Inspired by the painting "A Cobra Group" (1964), which is part of the museum's Peter and Gudrun Selinka Collection, the Kunstmuseum Ravensburg has dedicated its large summer exhibition to the animal. In its show "We Love Animals", which features more than a hundred works of art, the Kunstmuseum is taking a closer look at the relationship between man and animal from the 18th century to the present day, approaching the topic from a cultural perspective. As historical and contemporary images of animals inevitably mirror the social conditions prevalent when the works were created, different epochs have produced different animal images. It comes as no surprise then that the recent return of wolves to Europe is also reflected in contemporary art.
By devising his project "Wolves in Town", featuring serial wolf sculptures, Ottmar Hörl, the internationally renowned artist, has developed a site-specific installation that makes reference to a topical subject, the return of the wolves. A hundred wolves have conquered the Veitsburghang terrain, from where they are looking down on the mediaeval town. An extensive statement in public space, the gathering of wolves is a metaphor of man and wolf moving closer together, translated into an impressive image.
As in real life where wolf and man are meeting again, Hörl's art wolves have been let loose from the protected space of the museum, set up out-of-doors, and exposed to our reactions. As a visitor and passer-by, you are invited to let this breath-taking image fill your senses, and to contemplate man's projections on the wolf. Shaped by folk tradition, our concept of the bad, greedy and cruel wolf is inevitably also influenced by our own fears, obstructing the view of the animal's real living conditions.
(Translated from a German text by Dr Nicole Fritz, director of Kunstmuseum Ravensburg)
Fotos: Eva Schickler, Wynrich Zlomke / Kunstmuseum Ravensburg