This is the catalogue of an exhibition that took place in 2007 at different venues in Kassel, Germany. It consists of contemporary art by 109 artists from 43 countries and has no form, which means that the exhibition was not dedicated to a particular artist, a certain era or style.
The works of the many different artists in this catalogue follow a time line rather than alphabetical order. Hence, it is a mixture of contemporary art from the 14th till the 21st century. Certain works are highlighted within this time line, while the complete checklist of the art works can be found at the back.
The whole exhibition does not highlight artists’ names nor does it favour geopolitical identity (à la “art from India”). Despite this fact each work is attached to a local history. The Museum Fridericianum, the documenta-hall, the New Gallery, the Cultural Centre Schlachthof and Castle Wilhelmshöhe: Each of these buildings symbolises a specific century, a notion of the public and a concept of viewing art. The exhibition architecture responds to these specific spaces, and these spaces also demand and foster—as at the first documenta in 1955—debate and communication.
The audience of documenta 12 accepted the challenges of contemporary art and an exhibition not oriented toward the conventions of the western art market with great openness and attentiveness.