Mourning and Tears

16 November 2019 to 15 March 2020

Opening on Friday, 15 November 2019, at 19.30 hrs

The history of human civilizations is marked by traumatic experiences of loss, which have produced a great variety of cultural coping forms and strategies. Natural disasters, accidents, wars, epidemics and old age confront us with our inevitable finiteness. In a time in which the superhuman seems feasible, the confrontation with death confronts us with our transience, which overwhelms us with the loss of a human being and leaves us with the painful feeling of grief. The heterogeneity of the ways of coping with loss and the strategies for dealing with it show, on the one hand, that grief seems to be a universal feeling, but is embodied in a variety of ways and finds its individual expression. People suffer from loss experiences and seek successful coping strategies to escape grief.

In the exhibition LAMENTO I - Mourning and Tears, the Museum für Sepulkralkultur dedicates itself to a selection of international, contemporary works of art, the collective and individual experience of mourning experienced and felt as a consequence of a traumatic experience of loss. The artistic works are developed and exhibited in the context and in correspondence with the collection of the Museum für Sepulkralkultur.


© Nancy Borowick, „Die Umarmung“, aus „The Family Imprint“, 2017

Mathilde ter Heijne, „Lament - Song for Transition“ (Videostill), 2014

ACCOMPANYING PROGRAMME: The accompanying programme to the exhibition will expand and supplement the interdisciplinary debate on the themes of mourning in the form of discussion rounds/panels and lectures. Since the proportion of the population with a migration background in Kassel is 39 %, which is above the national average of 23.6 %, we would like to invite representatives of various cultures and religions to an interreligious dialogue.


Pietá mid 19th century © Museum for Sepulchral Culture

Funded by