Archive: Art in Kassel
Leading Thai artist builds sculpture of a ghost

Leading Thai artist builds sculpture of a ghost

Apichatpong Weerasethakul – Importance of Telepathy, 2012, documenta 12, Kassel, Germany, photo Latitudes (flickr)
Apichatpong Weerasethakul – Importance of Telepathy, 2012 at documenta 12, Kassel, Germany
Photo: Latitudes

Introduction

There’s no tinge of doubt that Apichatpong Weerasethakul is one of the most prolific contemporary Thai artists of our time. He’s the main feature in Tokyo’s boutique art gallery, the SCAI the Bathhouse. Apichatpong’s very popular works like Blissfully Yours (2002), Tropical Malady (2003), Power Boy (2009), Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (2009), the Fireworks (2015), and The Serenity of Madness (2016) catapulted him into limelight in the global art stage.

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This tank is not a real tank – Andreas Angelidakis

This tank is not a real tank – Andreas Angelidakis

Andreas Angelidakis - Polemos, 2017, documenta 14, Fridericianum Museum, Photo Nils Klinger
Andreas AngelidakisPolemos, 2017, Foam and vinyl seating modules, Ten blocks: 50 × 70 × 70 cm, 110 blocks: 50 × 70 × 140 cm, 16 blocks: 50 cm × 70 cm diameter, documenta 14, Fridericianum, Kassel, Germany
Photo: Nils Klinger

Introduction

Named for the Greek spirit of war and battle, Polemos is comprised of 136 foam blocks covered in various camouflage fabrics. Together the blocks of foam and vinyl seating modules create a massive tank, which can be disassembled and reassembled in other formations-including seating for visitors to the Fridericianum Museum (where the piece was exhibited during documenta 14). Clearly, a comment on the uncertain nature of war, Polemos is the result of Andreas Angelidakis multidisciplinary practice in art and architecture.

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See how Peter Kogler’s hypnotic installations transform rooms

See how Peter Kogler’s hypnotic installations transform rooms

Peter Kogler - Dimensions, 2011
Peter KoglerDimensions, 2011

Peter Kogler’s Rooms

Peter Kogler is a renowned artist from Austria that currently works and lives in Vienna. Kogler is best known for his different psychedelic room installations. Through his paintwork and his intricate projections, he transforms ordinary looking rooms and spaces such as lobbies, galleries, and transit centers by making them look twisted, warped or distorted, which in turn has a psychedelic effect for the public.

Kogler’s room installations explore vital concepts in his art such as modularity and repetition. The rooms alter one’s perception of architecture, which serves as the primary medium for his art. Aside from his dizzying rooms, Kogler is also an important performance, film and video artist as well as a sculptor.

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Marta Minujín’s monument on notorious Nazi book-burning location

Marta Minujín’s monument on notorious Nazi book-burning location

Marta Minujín - The Parthenon of Books, 2017, Friedrichsplatz Kassel, documenta 14, Photo- Roman März 1
Marta MinujinThe Parthenon of Books, 2017, documenta 14, Friedrichsplatz Kassel, Germany
Photo: Roman März

In the 1930s and 1940s in Nazi Germany, the government banned thousands of books which had been written by authors of Jewish descent or writers that had previously shown communist or pacifist alliances. Decades later, a monument has been created to commemorate the censored books under the guidance of Argentine artist Marta Minujin. The monument is designed to look like the full-scale replica of the Parthenon in Athens, which has become one of the world’s most visited monuments.

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Thai artist failed miserably, or did he not? – Sakarin Krue-On

Thai artist failed miserably, or did he not? – Sakarin Krue-On

Sakarin Krue-on -  Terraced Rice Fields, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12
Sakarin Krue-OnTerraced Rice Fields, rice field, ca. 7000sqm, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12, 2007

In 2007 Thai artist Sakarin Krue-On attempted to transform the park in front of a castle in Kassel, Germany into a 7.000sqm terraced rice field. For this project Krue-On and his Thai team tried to dispense the use of machines as much as possible, while relying on traditional methods, using simple devices such as spades, forks and hooks.

The clash of cultures, impressively shown through the contrast of the Wilhelmshöhe Castle and the field, is a key element of this work: On the one hand the majestic piece of European architecture, symbolizing status and power, embodying Western provenance, and right beneath, Thai workers using ancient methods to cultivate rice fields. Terraced Rice Field can also be seen as a representation of growth and collaboration. Pulling off documenta 12’s biggest work, an art event which drew 754,000 paying visitors, required an immense amount of negotiation and communication, in which different working methods met in the planning process. This is another major component of the artwork: Collective cooperation in which traditional knowledge meets scientific expertise.

This site-specific project was the first time that wet rice open air terraces were cultivated in outside fields in Germany. Unfortunately, the majority of the terraces couldn’t hold the water; regardless of what amount got added, it kept trickling away, and the work on project ultimately got stopped due to security concerns. However, more importantly than successfully growing crops, Krue-On managed to bring together people from all walks to life, transcending barriers by working next to each other.

Kassel Schloss Wilhelmshoehe photo dontworry
Sakarin Krue-OnTerraced Rice Fields, rice field, ca. 7000sqm, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12, 2007

Sakarin Krue-on -  Terraced Rice Fields, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12
Sakarin Krue-OnTerraced Rice Fields, rice field, ca. 7000sqm, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12, 2007

Sakarin Krue-on -  Terraced Rice Fields, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12
Sakarin Krue-OnTerraced Rice Fields, rice field, ca. 7000sqm, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12, 2007

Sakarin Krue-on -  Terraced Rice Fields, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12

Sakarin Krue-on -  Terraced Rice Fields, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12
Sakarin Krue-OnTerraced Rice Fields, rice field, ca. 7000sqm, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12, 2007

Sakarin Krue-on -  Terraced Rice Fields, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12
Sakarin Krue-OnTerraced Rice Fields, rice field, ca. 7000sqm, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12, 2007

Sakarin Krue-on -  Terraced Rice Fields, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12
Sakarin Krue-OnTerraced Rice Fields, rice field, ca. 7000sqm, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12, 2007

Sakarin Krue-on - Terraced Rice Fields, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12 9
Sakarin Krue-On with photo of Terraced Rice Fields, rice field, ca. 7000sqm, Schloss Wilhelmshoehe, Kassel, Germany, documenta12, 2007


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Lida Abdul seducing her audience with a defiant flag in the water

Lida Abdul seducing her audience with a defiant flag in the water

Lida Abdul - What we have overlooked

Lida Abdul - What we have overlooked
Lida Abdul, still from What We Have Overlooked, 2011, 16mm film, 3.44 min, 2 channel video installation

Lida Abdul’s two-channel work entitled What we have overlooked (2011) was first presented at dOCUMENTA (13), Kassel. She is an Afghan video and performance artist born in 1973 in Kabul. Forced to flee Afghanistan following the Russian invasion and the war that followed, Abdul lived as a refugee in Germany and India before settling in the US.

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