Katharina Fritsch (German, b.1956) is an installation artist and sculptor who lives and works in Düsseldorf. Born in Essen, Germany, Fritsch studied at the Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf from 1977 to 1984, where she was a pupil of Fritz Schwegler (German, b.1935). After graduating, Fritsch began exhibiting throughout Europe, Japan, and the United States. Her sculptures mix reality with imagination to create life-like, surreal imagery. She consistently focuses on the contrasting ideas of reality and fantasy, transforming the familiar to something bizarre and unexpected. She is best known for manipulating color and scale and using repetition in her installations, creating a mass-produced look while incorporating traditional ideas of sculpture. In 1995, she was chosen to represent Germany at the Venice Biennale where she displayed her famous work Rattenkönig (Rat king). Fritsch’s work can be viewed in galleries, public spaces, and unusual places that are normally overlooked. One of her sculptures of the Madonna—inspired by the cheap souvenirs sold near pilgrimage churches—can be seen on Salzstrasse, near the Dominican Church in Münster. Fritch’s Madonnas are life-size versions of these mementos painted a bright yellow and mass-produced in a series of multiples, stripping them of any religious meaning. This concept is seen in most of Fritch’s work in which she takes an object and transforms its meaning by altering its features.