A Prior – dOCUMENTA13 Kassel, A Review

August 23, 2012

A Prior – dOCUMENTA13 Kassel, A Review.
by Michele Dantini

The entrance to dOCUMENTA 13 is devoted to the large, empty atriums of the installation by Ryan Gander, the English artist famous for his reinvention of exhibition practices and his partiality to Absence; it is a polemical opener to the exhibition, challenging excessive production and the reduction of artworks to merchandise. Noteworthy initiatives hover at the edges of the visitor’s field of vision: first and foremost, this year’s dOCUMENTA is displaced, with sections set up in Kabul, Alexandria, Cairo and Banff. It proposes educational and artistic-artisanal projects. It has expanded its activities to become not merely an ‘event’ or a container of events, but an agency of education and cultural cooperation, an agency of redistribution. This is enough to lend curator Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev’s edition a connotation of ‘social activism’ and mutual benefit. There is a great desire for political content and the consecration of art as testimonial. The exhibition is decidedly broad and perhaps too disparate, for reasons that at times seem arbitrary. And so, we must try to select and recognize the constellation of artists who lend meaning to this dOCUMENTA. Here are at least three.
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