Meat – one moment a versatile basis for life, then suddenly decaying matter. For some, meat is repulsive, for others a source of nourishment – or even a sacrifice fit for the gods. Meat reveals the omnipresent conflict between life and death in human culture. Meat therefore occupies a paradoxical position in the contested space between life and death. The exhibition asks what influences these paradoxes bring to bear on the fields of nutrition, belief, and body – and, by extension, how they shape our relationship to meat in the present day.
Following on from the success of the Neues Museum’s Beards exhibition and Alchemy, Meat at the Altes Museum is the next exhibition by the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin to adopt an inter-thematic approach, with a view to creating meaningful juxtapositions of objects from the institution’s universal collections.
(Photo: Anne Vallayer-Coster, still life with ham, bottles and radishes (detail), 1767 © Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Gemäldegalerie / Jörg P. Anders)