Category Archives: Opening

Exhibition opening: OLIVER THIE. Die Wahrheit über den Ursprung der Welt

Tieranatomisches Theater der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Campus Nord, Philippstraße 13, Haus 3
Opening 01.10.2020, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Special exhibition

October 2nd, 2020 – December 30st, 2020 (every Tuesday till Sat., 2 to 6 p.m.)

The Berlin artist Oliver Thie preserves the shadows of rocks and reveals their long history.
For over two hundred years, the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin stores a collection of unimposing gray basalt specimens. They are evidence of a heated controversy about the origins of the earth known as the basalt dispute, which took place in the 18th century. Oliver Thie has explored these objects in an interdisciplinary dialogue with scientists from the Humboldt-Universität and the Museum für Naturkunde.

By combining the recording techniques of historical instruments with shadow projections, Oliver Thie developed his very own artistic method for capturing shadow images. In a kind of “a drawing excavation,” as Thie puts it, the shadows of the stones are worked out of paper covered with soot. Like black skins, the preserved silhouettes now float in front of the wall and can be viewed in full light. An individuality emerges from the shadows that would otherwise remain hidden in the unimposing stones.

Accompanying the exhibition, two lectures by Claudia Blümle (Oct 14) and Angela Strauß (t.b.a.) will take place in the historical auditorium of the Tieranatomisches Theater – and streamed via Zoom. Information and registration at

Curated by Felix Sattler

Exhibition opening: Trading and treating animals

Tieranatomisches Theater der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Campus Nord, Philippstraße 13, Haus 3
Opening 06.02.2020, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Special exhibition

February 7th, 2019 – December 30st, 2020 (every Tuesday till Sat., 2 to 6 p.m.)

30 years after the fall of the Wall, interest in a differentiated view of GDR science is growing. Research projects were guided by political or geo-strategic interests, but they also provided important insights and marked the beginning of cooperation that continues to this day. The exhibition Trading and treating animals focuses on the exchange of scientific knowledge, technology transfer and trade relations between the Mongolian People’s Republic (MPR) and the German Democratic Republic (GDR) between the late 1960s and 1980s. Bilateral economic agreements included the veterinary (parasitological) treatment of sheep diseases on the one hand and the establishment of the leather and textile processing industry in Mongolia on the other. The GDR was Mongolia’s most important trading partner in Europe and purchased leather and wool products mainly from MPR. The close cooperation between German scientists and local veterinarians in applied research on livestock diseases has established itself institutionally. Cooperation between the Freie Universität Berlin (FU) and the Mongolian University of Life Sciences, the Mongolian State University of Agriculture and the Institute of Veterinary Medicine in Ulaanbaatar still exists today.

The exhibition covers the range from veterinary medicine to technical, industrial and economic history. Exhibits from the fields of veterinary medicine, biology and veterinary technology are shown together with Mongolian industrial products such as carpets and clothing from the 1970s and 1980s. The display refers to the history of close scientific and economic cooperation.

The occasion for the exhibition is the 90th birthday of Prof. Dr. Theodor Hiepe, a scientist who played a major role in the research and development of treatment methods for sheep diseases. In 1960 he was appointed professor of the Department of Parasitology and Director of the Institute of Parasitology and Vet. med. Zoology of the Veterinary Faculty of the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (HU). From 1993 until his retirement in 1995 he was Professor of Parasitology at the Freie Universität Berlin. Prof. Dr. Hiepe was the initiator, patron and head of the ectoparasite control program. Under his leadership, the ectoparasite control research laboratory was established in Mongolia in 1970.

The exhibition was curated by Katharina Otto and Felix Sattler. Scientific advisory board: Prof. Dr. Theodor Hiepe (Prof. em., HU), Prof. Dr. med. vet. Peter-Henning Clausen (FU), Prof. Dr. Kai Matuschewski (HU), Dr. Adnan Al Halbouni (FU). With generous support of the Embassy of Mongolia in the Federal Republic of Germany.

Opening of the Sammlungsschaufenster of the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Tieranatomisches Theater der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Campus Nord, Philippstraße 13, Haus 3
21.10.2019, 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.


The Sammlungsschaufenster of the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

New permanent exhibition at the Tieranatomisches Theater

With the opening of its collections on 21 October 2019, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin offers a new interactive visitor experience. The Meshwork of Things – Sammlungsschaufenster at the Tieranatomisches Theater invites visitors to explore the diversity of things, unknown contexts and critical positions in collection practice. An app offers visitors an individualized experience in which things are activated in always new constellations.
Starting from the thematic fields of “use”, “origin”, “diversity” and “locality”, further links can be activated. By means of the app, visitors of all ages can playfully walk through a ‘meshwork of things’, inform themselves specifically about individual objects with texts, images and films, or trace contexts in virtual tours. What does the photography of the Marienkirche in Prenzlau have in common with a rock sample of ice age debris? Is there a common tool for understanding a crystallographic model and clay fragments from a Cushitic sacred place in Sudan? And what does a lava stone have to do with jihad?
The virtual tours on collection practices (“practice”, “comparative seeing”), contemporary historical classifications (“collected in the GDR”), gender-specific questions (“collecting is a women’s issue”) and object genres (“models”) form bridges between scientific disciplines that also include new perspectives on highly topical social issues such as migration.

The historical library cupboards from 1790 form a fascinating frame for an exhibition design that manages without visible texts and trains the eye for objects. The unique architecture of this “Cabinet of Wonder of the 21st Century” contains lighting that can be individually controlled for each exhibit, making the tour of the exhibition through the app visible in real time.

To launch the exhibition, the Sammlungsschaufenster presents 80 objects out of 24 collections of the HU and partner institutions. Among others, the objects come from the Historisches Kabinet of the Department of Psychology, the Sammlung am Centrum für Anatomie, the Sudan Archaeological Collection, the Art Treasury, the Sound Archives and the Medienarchäologischer Fundus. Familiar objects and famous persons appear as well as lesser-known and surprising things. 
Heiner Müller’s research library contains not only great literature, but also his personal copy of Raoul Whitfield’s crime novel Green Ice. It is an informative document, as Heiner Müller noted his thoughts on reading while travelling in it. 
In university collections, it is not only the preservation of things that is important, but above all their usage. From the Medienarchäologischer Fundes, the Sammlungsschaufenster shows a “Commodore 64”, the first powerful and affordable home computer that came onto the market in 1982 and now enjoys cult status. Instead of being preserved as a whole, it has been dismantled into its components. Understanding by deconstruction is a central method in teaching that can sometimes be irretrievable – to explore in the tour “Loss is part of the business”
The theme of “migration” can be found in many collections at very different scales – geological, regional or global. Ice Age glaciers have transported rocks from Scandinavia to Brandenburg. Brandenburg Children’s games document regional migration and urbanization in the early 20th century. Germany’s first mosque was built during the First World War in a prisoner-of-war camp in Wünsdorf.

Conceived as a dynamic permanent exhibition, the objects and focal themes are exchanged in intervals of six to twenty-four months, so that the Meshwork of Things always produces new topics and links and the objects remain usable in the collections for research and teaching.

Curated by Felix Sattler, Sarah Becker and Jessica Korp.
Idea and original concept: Felix Sattler and Dr. Jochen Hennig.