TIERREICH / REGNO ANIMALE / ANIMAL KINGDOM at the
International Exhibition of Contemporary Art, Bologna
The animals in these pictures are shown as in traditional paintings of rulers (Herscher-Portrait) and religious figures. The stork for example, an animal associated with delivering babies, is shown with a halo (Heiligenschein) of butterflies, like the Virgin Mary with the holy infant. Rainer Elstermann also wanted some paintings to resemble family portraits: newlyweds in front of the Register's office or a couple with children playing in front of their house. He depicted animals in pairs or groups in their natural environment, a habitat that is not only home, but also part of their very being. His work includes four large-format pictures and two triptychs.
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