04/18 – 06/21/2015


Animals populate the internet: In social networks pictures of grumpy looking cats or sneezing pandas receive millions of clicks and comments and get viewed or shared over and over again—a phenomenon that reflects the human fascination with animals. They are omnipresent in the visual arts as well: drawn, painted, photographed, chiseled from stone and marble, or cast in bronze, they appear as recurring motifs.

On the basis of key works from Erlangen’s Municipal Art Collection, the exhibition #catcontent examines the diverse forms of the depiction of animals in art. In the shape of images, animals have served as attributes, symbols, or metaphors for human traits for many centuries. A new outlook on the multifaceted relationship between humans and animals can be found in contemporary approaches that examine the use of digital images to raise questions about the way nature is represented. Many contemporary positions in art involve animals in order to show their perspective, thus calling for a change of perception. These works not only take man’s observation of animals into account, but also look at the human world through the eyes of animals. Therefore, animals in art are no longer perceived merely as metaphors or objects, but rather are presented as active protagonists capable of making situational decisions in their environment.

An accompanying interdisciplinary program with performances, films, podium discussions, lectures, workshops, plays, guided tours, and a poetry slam was developed in cooperation with the Friedrich-Alexander University of Erlangen-Nuremberg and the 19th International Puppetry Festival. The highlight of this program is an interdisciplinary convention on the issue of animal agency. Along with the exhibition an extensive catalog including information on the participating artists and essays on the accompanying academic program will be published.


Kader Attia (FR), Georg Baselitz (DE), Thomas Bayrle (DE), Joseph Beuys (DE), Björn Braun (DE), Annika Eriksson (SE), Erró (IS), Eckart Hahn (DE), Henrik Håkansson (SE), Keith Haring (US), Judith Hopf (DE), Jörg Immendorff (DE), Jürgen Klauke (DE), Eva Kot’átková (CZ), Agnes Meyer-Brandis (DE), Katja Novitskova (EE), Dennis Oppenheim (US), A.R. Penck (DE), Adriana Ramić (US), Kirstine Roepstorff  (DK), Mathilde Rosier (FR), Dieter Roth (CH), Shimabuku (JP), Wolf Vostell (DE)



Funded by 


Kindly supported by 



Vernissage: 17.04.2015