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The documenta archiv to receive an important donation: The internationally unique performance art archive "Die Schwarze Lade / the Black Kit: Archive for Performance, Action and Intermedia Art" to be presented by documenta artist Boris Nieslony

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#4 Archive as a virus. Lecture by Marcelo Rezende


documenta Institute Discourse #4


Thursday, April 26, 2018, 6.30 pm


Venue: Auditorium of the Kunsthochschule Kassel, Menzelstraße 13-15


Admission free


Address of Welcome: Prof. Dr. Nora Sternfeld, documenta professor


The lecture will be held in English.


A collaboration with the documenta professor at the Kunsthochschule Kassel.

The French philosopher Jacques Derrida wrote in “Mal d’Archive”, 1995: “There is no political power without control of the archive, if not memory. Effective democratization can always be measured by this essential criterion: the participation in and the access to the archive, its constitution, and its interpretation”.

Since then, the archive became a particular kind of cultural obsession, a fever, a “maladie de mémoire.” Besides the issues on its configuration, history or technical definition, issues such as the archive’s structural reorganization, digitization or the dream of the “living archive” have been discussed as symptoms of this particular virus. However, how about the political meaning of the archive, where Derrida has fixed his attention? In this lecture, the speaker will discuss his experiences in order to offer new ways of thinking for an archive.



Marcelo Rezende (b. 1968 in Brazil) is a researcher, critic and exhibition-maker. He was director of the Museum of Modern Art of Bahia (2012–2015), artistic director of the 3rd Bahia Biennial (2014) and was part of the curatorial group of the 28th São Paulo Biennial (2008), amongst other projects and occupations. Author of the novel "Arno Schmidt" (2005), he is associate curator of the Museu do Mato (Scrubland Museum) in Bahia, and curator of the exhibition "Kaffee aus Helvecia" (2017) at the Johann Jacobs Museum (Zürich). He was also part of the series of events "Museal Episode. On the Global Future of Museums" (Goethe-Institut/ Kulturstiftung des Bundes, 2015-2017). Together with Rudolf Fischer, he has been director of the Archive der Avantgarden (AdA) in Dresden since 2017.