Last weekend I was at dOCUMENTA(13), a large-scale exhibition that takes place every five years in Kassel. It all started in 1955, in order to bring Germany back from the cultural darkness from Nazi regime into the contemporary art evolution of the actual time. Therefore, dOCUMENTA differs from some more commercially popular biennale in the sense that it often works with a concrete theme that comes from the current societal needs and developments.
This time dOCUMENTA is connecting Kassel with Kabul, Alexandria-Cairo and Banff, and the main theme is “Collapse and Recovery”. The show has been curated by well-known Carolyne Christov-Bakargiev (CCB) and it lasts, as usual, for 100 days.
I was moved there with so many of artworks. What counts (in my humble opinion) is the artistic vision / goal / intension and subsequently personally experience and subconscious reaction.
This beautiful work is a tapestry, spread around in a semicircle in the rotunda and showing half-true half-fantasy: a destroyed Dar-ul Aman palace in Kabul with people attending banquet in honour of dOCUMENTA(13), superimposed in the image. Other, rather fantasy images, are combined throughout the tapestry.
Mariam Ghani shows a 2-channel video installation, in which in both of them a female figure goes through the empty spaces: ruined in Kabul and deserted in Kassel. Mariam narrates in the background about the conflicts and history and philosophical symbolism of both. You get the impression that you see and hear a poetry – very sad one.
During her engagement for Sydney Biennale in 2008, CCB got in contact with these artists of aboriginal background. The paintings shown here go back to the traditional painting style of dotting and applying the colour in a special order so that this somewhat psychedelic impression is created.
A lot of interesting works could be seen outdoors, as here in park Karlsaue, but also in different streets and buildings in Kassel. This one is inviting the visitors to go inside the tent.
dOCUMENTA will end at 16.09.2012.