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When art opens eyes

Two Meetings and a Funeral
Regissør: Naeem Mohaiemen
(Storbrittannia)

The experience of the dynamics of contemporary art festival – the interaction between cultural and political statements and my physical and mental movement through it – remains as the most thought provoking. 

When the bombed-out small town of Kassel was to be rebuilt from the war hell, a local anti-fascist artist, returning home after war captivity, established a contemporary art festival for the art the Nazis had banned. No one in 1955 could dream that Documenta – which was then part of "The German Garden Exhibition" – would within a few decades become the world's most important art festival in most measurable terms, and that it would be visited by around a million people each once it takes place. Documenta is organized every five years and is compulsory for all artists, art students and others with ambitions to understand and participate in international contemporary art.

This year's Documenta 14 was pronounced politically and activist and was based on nationalism, migration and our close history.

Document 14. This year's exhibition was stated politically and activist, and curated by the leading, radical Polish curator Adam Szymczyk. He has based nationalism, migration and our close history to create an exhibition that breaks with the social and economic hierarchies of the art world. I therefore had expectations for this year's version – which was also arranged in Athens for the first time – although from experience I rarely get anything particularly out of political art within such a framework. I myself have participated in another major international exhibition, Manifesta, and have known how such contemporary art exhibitions can place restrictions on "politically engaged" art; they are heavily funded by public funds, and it does not have to provoke the granting authorities too much.

Documenta 14 is an extremely extensive exhibition consisting of traditional gallery spaces, film programs, publications, archives, performances and actions, debates, outdoors. . .

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eiebakke@hotmail.com
Eiebakke is a visual artist. He has exhibited at Manifesta 9 in Spain, "In the shadow of war: 100 years of Norwegian political art" at the Artists' House and is currently working with Public Art Munich 2018. He was recently up to date with an installation for the Island Festival.

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