Saturday, July 13, 2013

Museum of Hunting and Fishing (Deutsches Jagd und Fischereimuseum), Munich, Germany; Guest Post by Eric Huang

One of my favorite people in all the world--the delightful and intrepid Eric Huang (aka dinoboy)--took a trip to the Munich Museum of Hunting and Fishing (Deutsches Jagd und Fischereimuseum) a few weeks ago. His findings were so interesting that I asked him to write a guest post for the readers of Morbid Anatomy:
Munich's Museum of Hunting and Fishing (Deutsches Jagd und Fischereimuseum) houses hunting artefacts. There are vintage knives, drinking horns, paintings, and taxidermy galore. Cool stuff, sure, but at first glance the museum is profoundly ... meh. Other museums tackle the topic in more extensive, confronting, beautiful ways. That said, Deutsches Jagd und Fischereimuseum is worth a visit for two reasons.

The museum is on consecrated ground (top 2 images), namely a 13th century church in disrepair called Augustinerkirche. Taxidermy mounts replace stations of the cross, an Irish Elk skeleton stands in place of a crucifix in the nave, and a collection of the Snow Queen's finest hunting sleds forms the the altar.
Even better than the location is something that makes the Munich museum truly unique: wolpertingers (images 5-7). The size of a rabbit, often winged, antlered, sometimes fanged and reptilian, always dangerous: wolpertingers are rabbit-like animals from Bavarian folklore. Jackalopes are arguably North American wolpertines, though much less terrible than the Bavarian varieties.
The first wolpertinger encounter is in a diorama nestled between the native bird and mammals sections of the museums. Later on, wolpertines get their own room - oddly adjacent to a depiction of prehistoric humans. The exhibition also includes prints  illustrating the anatomy and dissection of a wolpertine. This bottom photo shows two animals in the act of creating a wolpertinger!
There was also a temporary exhibit of human hunting archetypes. The focus was on Vikings, culminating in an entire wall about Thor with Marvel comics and movie posters from the latest film. Asterix also makes an appearance. It reminded me of a school fair.
To find out more about the Munich's Museum of Hunting and Fishing (Deutsches Jagd und Fischereimuseum), click here. To find out more about the delightful Eric Huang, click here.


Bob Humm said...

Great stuff. Perhaps that last picture is where Jake & Dinos Chapman got their idea for Fucking with Nature, 2009.

William Thirteen said...

Yes, one of my colleagues in our Munich office has 'Wolpertinger' as a surname, which has provided us a modicum of fun at his expense.

I have walked past the place numerous times on visits to the city but unfortunately it has never been during its opening hours. Hope springs eternal, though!