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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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#7 Please take off your shoes! Participation and Instruction at the documenta. Lecture by Annemarie Kok


From the documenta archiv #7


Thursday, November 8, 2018, 6:30 pm


Venue: Gießhaus on the area of the university, Mönchebergstraße 5, 34127 Kassel


Admission free


Address of Welcome: Dr. Birgit Jooss, director of the documenta archiv


A collaboration with the documenta professor at the Kunsthochschule Kassel.

© documenta archiv / Balthasar Burkhard

Balthasar Burkhard: John Dugger, David Medalla, First Manifesto of the Artist‘s Liberation Front - Movement for People‘s Culture, 1st May 1971, 1972, Inv.No.: docA MS d05-10010468

In the sixties of the 20th century, the first wave of the so-called participatory art took place. The fifth documenta in 1972, directed by Harald Szeemann (1933 - 2005), offered an important platform for this newly emerging art form. A large, red-painted pavilion in the courtyard of the Museum Fridericianum attracted the attention of the audience: the People's Participation Pavilion by the artists David Medalla (*1942) and John Dugger (*1948). Here they gathered works of art that invited the audience to participate. But what exactly awaited the visitors in this pavilion, what were they allowed to do in it and what not?

In her lecture, Annemarie Kok briefly defines the concept of participatory art and places it in the context of art history. She then outlines the role of participation in the exhibition concept of the 5th documenta. At the center of her interest is the pavilion of Dugger and Medalla, which she reconstructs and whose underlying ideas and motifs she presents. Two large arches with handwritten instructions for the People's Participation Pavilion stored in the documenta archiv serve as a basis for her presentation making clear the necessity of such instructions for any art of participation.


The lecturer is a doctoral student at the University of Groningen focusing her research on participatory art of the 1960s. She has taught at the University of Utrecht and Groningen and the Willem de Kooning Academy in Rotterdam.