Gallery 1 / 25. 4. – 27. 7. 2024


Marina Abramović, Peter Bartoš , Mark Dion, Gino de Dominicis , VALIE EXPORT, Matthias Garff, Margarita Ivy–Bystrík Klčo,  Annika Kahrs, Olga Karlíková , Eva Koťátková , Jiří Kubový, Diana Lelonek, Jochen Lempert, Via Lewandowsky, Ana Mendieta, Karel Miler, Jan Mlčoch, Wolfgang Müller, Yoko Ono, Jan Ságl , Yehudit Sasportas, Julia Steiner

Curators: Pavlína Morganová – Petra Stegmann


Every spring, nature comes alive with the song of birds, and this year is no exception, as the Ústí nad Labem House of Arts resonates with it. The international exhibition project with a Czech-German focus was jointly prepared by Pavlína Morganová (head of VVP AVU) and Petra Stegmann (director of Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven), combining diverse artistic views on birds from the perspective of conceptual and action art, sculpture, video, as well as performance and drawing from the 1960s to the present.

Birds, these fragile creatures, fascinate us with their movement and mysterious life. Thanks to their ability to fly long distances and hide in the heights, they lead a secretive double life across various continents. The aesthetic qualities of their bodies, as well as their song, their social communication, and the ability to fly, evoke our desire. However, interest in these creatures can be ambivalent, oscillating between trust and suspicion, mundanity and mystery, boundless freedom and domestication. These positions also appear in a number of artistic works.

The exhibition at the Ústí nad Labem House of Arts is a partially modified repeat of the exhibition that premiered in July 2023 at the Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven in northern Germany. In Ústí nad Labem, it is enriched with some local approaches and the unique tradition of the so-called Lumpe park, which was founded in 1908 by local entrepreneur Heinrich Lumpe. The bird sanctuary that was established on the site of the current Ústí nad Labem ZOO is among the oldest publicly accessible parks of its kind in Central Europe. Heinrich Lumpe’s goal was both to provide endangered birds with a sanctuary in the growing industrial city and to alert the general public to the importance and utility of avifauna. This exhibition also subscribes to these goals and presents a wide spectrum of contemporary art approaches, bringing a number of internationally recognized artistic personalities to Ústí nad Labem, some of whom are exhibiting in the Czech Republic for the first time.


Supported by the Czech-German funds for the future.