Following the exhibition ALMOST LIVE, which presented hyper-realistic sculptures extending up as far as the turn of the millennium by the pioneer- generation, the exhibition SUPERNATURAL asks about the future of corporeality in the Anthropocene.

Given the technological developments in biogenetics, man will be in a position in the future to existentially alter everything living, nature, the animal world and the images of man. What will bodies look like in the future? Who or what will we be? In what kind of environment will we live?  The exhibition SUPERNATURAL presents responses from the realm of hyper-realistic and realistic sculpture.

The forward-looking works not only reflect impacts of the digital revolution and genetic technology on “post-human” man and the environment, they also illustrate by means of hybrid creations that in our day the borderlines between nature and culture have become fluid. Increasingly, technical innovations also play a role in the development of the latest hyper-realistic sculptures.

When the artists perfect their production processes using 3D printing and extend the sculptural limits in the direction of robotics and synthetic biology, for them too, new design possibilities open up that are located somewhere between artefact, biology and technology.


Concept: Nicole Fritz


Curators: Nicole Fritz and Maximilian Letze


Sponsored by



Daniel Knorr


DANIEL KNORR (1968 Bucharest) is regarded as one of the most innovative concept artists of his generation. In the past, the site-specific installations of this artist, who took part in both the Venice Biennales and documenta exhibitions, caused quite a stir. On the occasion of documenta 14, for example, he had white smoke billow up into the Kassel sky from the chimney of the Zwehrenturm, and at the 2005 Venice Biennale the “empty” pavilion by means of which he represented his native country Romania unleashed a political debate.

Today the artist lives in Berlin and Hong Kong. In addition to projects in the public domain, since the 1990s he has created a multifaceted oeuvre embracing not only photography, but also installation-sculptural works, performances and participatory action art. As an overall view of Daniel Knorr’s oeuvre has so far been lacking, despite his individual works being on show in exhibitions, art fairs and the public realm over the past decades, the Kunsthalle Tübingen is now providing an overview with a particular focus on the artist’s most recent work groups.


Curator: Nicole Fritz


An extensive monograph will be published to accompany the exhibition with essays by Nicole Fritz, Frank-Thorsten Moll, Adam Szymczyk and Li Zhenhua


With the generous support of


Download booklet of the exhibition


In times of change a desire often emerges to preserve and recall our own roots. Correspondingly, there is a boom in things historical currently. In advertising, fashion and film today, the Old is being positioned as the Authentic, as opposed to a unified mass-produced culture, and is frequently being idealized with a strong touch of nostalgia.

In contemporary art too, the art of past centuries is experiencing a veritable comeback. While in the 1980s, under the heading Appropriation Art, the art of modernism and above all the 20th century was being cited by artists, for some years now we have been witnessing an increased orientation around Old Masters painting and traditional techniques. A younger generation is turning to the art of past epochs and, as carriers of cultural memory updating the “mnemic energies” (Aby Warburg) stored in the masterpieces for today.


Artists in the exhibition

Philip Akkerman, Irene Andessner, José Manuel Ballester, Glenn Brown, Léo Caillard, Wim Delvoye, Slawomir Elsner, Hans-Peter Feldmann, Jochen Flinzer, Christian Jankowski, Liane Lang, Liza Lou, Pia Maria Martin, Brigitte Maria Mayer, Chantal Michel, Jean-Luc Moerman, Yasumasa Morimura, Ciprian Mureşan, Agathe Pitié, Antoine Roegiers, Markus Schinwald, Cindy Sherman, Yinka Shonibare CBE, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Ged Quinn, Kehinde Wiley



Nicole Fritz


Exhibition Catalogue

152 pages, Hardcover, numerous colour illustrations
Publisher: Nicole Fritz
Essays by Nicole Fritz, Zita Hartel, Johannes Meinhardt and Klaus Speidel.
Kunsthallen-Special-prize: 30 €

Congo Stars

The exhibition CONGO STARS will show popular painting dating from the 1960s to today, side by side with contemporary art using other artistic means. In cooperation with the Kunsthaus Graz, the Royal Museum of Central Africa Tervuren, the Iwalewahaus in Bayreuth and PICHA in Lubumbashi, about 150 works will be presented by about 70 Congolese artists who live in Kinshasa, Lubumbashi, Brussels, Aachen or Paris.

The conceptual departure point for the exhibition is Fiston Mwanza Mujila’s novel Tram 83, in which the author describes an imaginary place which may refer to the social reality of Congolese metropolises but cannot be associated with any concrete city. The exhibition also builds an imaginary place that draws on different realities and in doing so interweaves politics, exploitation, corruption, violence, religion, mythology, spirituality, star cult and everyday life, as well as pleasure, passion and sensual desire.

The tour of the exhibition unfolds along six chapters – Street, Bar, At home, Mythology, Stars, Exploitation. The real and imaginary places and spaces which are dovetailed have community- and identity-building functions and condense aspects of the fictional. A timeline with a great diversity of music stations, texts and originals provides information on the history of the events and on the context of Congolese art.

The exhibition title addresses popular culture, stars and heroes of Congolese society. It also refers to the stars on the national flag, the changing political systems and regimes, for not only the name of today’s Democratic Republic of the Congo was altered according to the state doctrine, but also the appearance of the national flags. CONGO STARS even points to an actual ‘reaching for the stars’, that is, Zaire’s short-lived but ambitious space programme under President Mobuto in the 1970s, which the latter attempted to implement with the support of the German company OTRAG – Orbital Transport Raketen Aktion Gesellschaft.

CONGO STARS however is anything but a “national” show of achievements of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Instead, it mixes the real experiences, projections, dreams and longings of artists who live in the Congo and in Europe. What is also tangible for the visitor is not least the longing for a positively-connoted social space located territorially and temporally ‘outside’ – a perspective for the future.

Artists of the exhibition

Alfi Alfa (Alafu Bulongo), Apollo, Prince Badra, Sammy Baloji, David N. Bernatchez, Kiripi, Gilbert Banza Nkulu, Chéri Benga (Hyppolite Benga Nzau), Junior Bilaka, Bodo (Camille-Pierre Pambu Bodo),  Claude Bosana, Dominique Bwalya Mwando, Chéri Cherin, (Joseph Kinkonda), Trésor Cherin, (Nzeza Lumbu), Revital Cohen & Tuur Van Balen, Revital Cohen, Edisak, Ekunde (Bosoku), Sam Ilus (Mbombe Ilunga), Jean Kamba, Eddy Kamuanga Ilunga, Kasongo, Jean Mukendi Katambayi, Kayembe F, Aundu Kiala, Bodys Isek Kingelez, Ange Kumbi, Hilaire Balu Kuyangiko, Lady Kambulu, Gosette Lubondo, Lukany, Ernest Lungieki, George Makaya Lusavuvu, Tinda Lwimba, Michèle Magema, Maho Zaire, Mampela, Manuva Mani, Maurice Mbikayi, Mbuëcky Jumeaux (oder: Mbvecky Frères), Micha JP Mika (Jean Paul Nsimba), Mega Mingiedi Tunga, Moke (Monsengo Kejwamfi), Moke-Fils (Jean Marie Mosengo Odia), Mson Becha Shérif Decor, Musondo, Vitshois Mwilambwe Bondo, Nkaz Mav, Vincent Nkulu, Chéri Samba (Samba wa Mbimba N’Zingo Nuni Masi Ndo Mbasi), SAPINart (Makengele Mamungwa), Monsengo Shula, Sim Simaro (Nsingi Simon), Soku Ldj, Maître SYMS (Bayangu Mayala), Marciano Tajho, Tambwe, Tshibumba Kanda Matulu, Pathy Tshindele Kapinga, Turbo

im cooperation with

Kunsthaus GrazKönigliches Museum für Zentralafrika TervurenIwalewahaus in Bayreuth, PICHA


Sammy Baloji, Bambi Ceuppens, Fiston Mwanza Mujila, Günther Holler-Schuster and Barbara Steiner.


gefördert im Fonds TURN der

Birgit Jürgenssen

Birgit Jürgenssen (1949-2003) gehörte neben Valie Export und Maria Lassnig zur Avantgarde der 1970er Jahre in Österreich. An kunsthistorische Traditionen, wie den Surrealismus, anknüpfend, entwickelte sie im Stillen ein eigenständiges Œuvre, das neben einem großen Fundus an Zeichnungen auch Skulpturen, experimentelle Objekte, Videos und vor allem Fotografie umfasst. Unter dem Titel ICH BIN zeigt die Kunsthalle Tübingen mit rund 200 Werken die erste umfassende Werkpräsentation der Künstlerin in Deutschland.

Dreh- und Angelpunkt im Werk von Birgit Jürgenssen ist dabei der Körper. Dieser ist nicht nur Gegenstand ihrer Zeichnungen sondern auch die Erfahrungsinstanz, aus der heraus sie diese entwickelt. In den Zeichnungen der 1970er Jahre hat sie mit seismografischem Spürsinn festgehalten, was dem begrifflichen und damit bewussten Erfassen vorausgeht: Zwischenmenschliche Beziehungen, Sexualität, gesellschaftsbedingte Schönheitsvorstellungen und Geschlechterverhältnisse werden von ihr mit subversivem Humor selbstironisch ebenso reflektiert wie tiefere Schichten ihrer eigenen Identität.

War der Blick auf das Werk der Künstlerin bislang vor allem auch durch Arbeiten zum Geschlechterverhältnis geprägt, ist es uns ein Anliegen, die Perspektive darauf weiter zu dimensionieren. Die Ausstellung und auch die Beiträge im begleitenden Katalog bearbeiten zum einen bislang wenig beachtete Werkblöcke wie die Fotografien und ihr Spätwerk. Zum anderen zeigen wir, dass Birgit Jürgenssen Bilder und Symbole unserer gesamten Kulturgeschichte mit eigener geistiger und emotionaler Energie aufgeladen und so für die Gegenwart aktualisiert hat. Ihr körperbezogener Ansatz erhält gerade heute, in einer Zeit, in der es durch die Digitalisierung zu einer zunehmenden Verflachung der Alltagswahrnehmung kommt, eine neue Aktualität. Ihr Werk, das aus dem Intimen kommt, steht nicht zuletzt für ein authentisches, innengeleitetes Leben und letztlich auch für den selbstbestimmten und emanzipatorischen Impuls der Kunst.


Natascha Burger und Nicole Fritz


Estate Birgit Jürgenssen

Private Leihgeber

Sammlung Verbund, Wien

Die Ausstellung wird im Anschluss an die Kunsthalle Tübingen auch an nachfolgenden Stationen zu sehen sein:
GAMeC – Galleria d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Bergamo (Bergamo, Italien), 8. März – 19. Mai 2019
LOUISIANA Museum of Modern Art (Humlebæk, Dänemark), Sommer 2019


Es erscheint ein Katalog mit Textbeiträgen von:
Patricia Allmer, Michael Bracewell, Louisa Buck, Natascha Burger, Maurizio Cattelan, Melissa Destino, Marta Dziewańska, Heike Eipeldauer, Nicole Fritz, Lorenzo Giusti, Jessica Morgan, Gabriele Schor, Jasper Sharp, Abigail Solomon-Godeau, Ninja Walbers

Kunsthallen-Sonderpreis: 29,90 €

Almost Alive

The desire to create as realistic a representation of man as possible is as old as humanity itself, extending far back to Antiquity. In the course of cultural history, artists have developed techniques for representing the human body in the most realistic fashion possible. Whereas illusionistic sculptures from earlier centuries are still symbolic figures connected with religious, artistic and historical themes, since the mid-20th century, the focus has shifted to man and individuality.

In the 1960s, with the inclusion of everyday reality in art, American artists Duane Hanson, John De Andrea and George Segal turned once more to a realistic depiction of the human body. Through the use of traditional techniques such as modelling, casting and painting, they created hyperrealistic sculptures that renewed the realistic tradition in sculpture, which had long been considered to be outdated. This figurative impulse inspired subsequent generations of sculptors, who to this very day have carried on the hyperrealistic pictorial idiom of the pioneers in a contemporary manner.

Almost Alive provides a survey of the hyperrealistic movement of the past 50 years and is thus the first exhibition worldwide to focus on the development of this sculptural genre in the 20th and 21st centuries. The more than 30 exhibits on show not only outline this art movement from the 1970s to the present, but also highlight how depictions of human corporeality have always been shaped by the respective zeitgeist and in retrospect can be seen as mirroring time-bound concepts of the body.

The exhibition at the Kunsthalle Tübingen brings together hyperrealistic sculptures from around the world (U.S., Canada, Australia, Scotland, Italy, Spain and Belgium, among others) in a chronological arrangement. Starting with the pioneers of the movement from the U.S. and Great Britain, the exhibition tour leads on via Robert Gober, Berlinde de Bruyckere and Maurizio Cattelan – who under the influence of digitization in the 1990s each in their individual way updated the body anew as the seat of the Ego in the form of hyperrealistic sculptures – to more recent positions, such as that of Marie-Eve Levasseur – who addresses the theme of the influence of technology on the human body.

The sculptures gathered here not only fascinate through their veristic link to reality and their precise craftsmanship. They aim not least to draw attention to our voyeuristic media-steered patterns of reception and to the vulnerability and fragility of our own body.

Sexy and Cool

Die Minimal Art gilt als eine der einflussreichsten Stilgattungen des 20. Jahrhunderts. Werke von Donald Judd, Robert Morris, Dan Flavin, Carl Andre und Sol LeWitt, die zum Kernbestand der Minimal Art gezählt werden, sind in vielen amerikanischen und europäischen Museen und Privatsammlungen vertreten und damit in das »kulturelle Gedächtnis« eingegangen.

Ruth Root, ohne Titel, 2002-2004, Emaille auf Leinwand, 46,0 x 61,0 x 4,5 cm, © Ruth Root

RUTH ROOT Untitled, 2002–2004

FRANZ ERHARD WALTHER Organon, plastisch, 1986

FRANZ ERHARD WALTHER Organon, plastisch, 1986

Unter dem Titel SEXY AND COOL. MINIMAL GOES EMOTIONAL nimmt die Ausstellung der Kunsthalle Tübingen das Nachleben der Minimal Art in der Gegenwart in den Blick. Von den Postminimal-Positionen wie Eva Hesse oder Franz Erhard Walther ausgehend, werden rund sechzig Werke von überzwanzig internationalen Künstlerinnen und Künstlern präsentiert, die sich heute formal und konzeptuell auf die Ansätze der Minimal Art beziehen, ihre Arbeiten jedoch um sensuell-körperliche Aspekte sowie subjektive Inhalte, kurz um eine eigene emotionale Ebene erweitern.

Künstlerinnen wie Ruth Root oder Mariella Mosler reagieren beispielsweise auf die minimalistische Ästhetik, indem sie die avantgardistische Formensprache durch subjektive Gestik und sinnliche Materialien aufladen.

Sylvie Fleury, Lara Favaretto oder Kay Walkowiak unterlaufen die strengen Strategien der Väter der Minimal Art dagegen spielerisch und humorvoll. Nicht zuletzt entwickeln Gegenwartskünstler den Ortsbezug und die minimalistische Prämisse, die Wahrnehmung des Betrachters zu sensibilisieren weiter.

In Rauminstallationen wie von Christiane Löhr werden die poetische Energie der Natur und die Reduktion auf ein Minimum an Material für den Betrachter erfahrbar. Indem die internationalen GegenwartskünstlerInnen die elementaren Formen der Minimal Art auf außerkünstlerische Bereiche erweitern und sozusagen wieder mit der Welt verbinden, wird die historische Stilgattung für die Gegenwart aktualisiert und treibt im wahrsten Sinne des Wortes zeitgemäße neue Blüten.