Documenta is one of the most important exhibitions of modern and contemporary art which now takes place every five years in Kassel, Germany. It was founded by artist, teacher and curator Arnold Bode in 1955 as part of the Bundesgartenschau (Federal Horticultural Show) which took place in Kassel at that time. This first documenta featured many artists who are generally considered to have had a significant influence on modern art (such as Picasso and Kandinsky). The more recent documentas feature art from all continents; nonetheless most of it is site-specific. The last documenta, the documenta XII, was from 16th of June until 23rd of September 2007. Every documenta is limited to 100 days of exhibition, which is why it is often referred to as the “museum of 100 days”. The documenta XIII will begin on June 9th, 2012.
… Again and again, the documenta has shattered the world of art, whether in poor postwar times when people thirsted for art, whether in rebellious years of revolution, whether in the lighthearted era at the end of the 20th century or whether at the turn of the century dominated by globalisation. The history of the documenta is a history of defeats, of doubts, of scandals and, at the same time, of renewal, of discovery and of artistic creatitvity. Above all, however, it has always been a history of success …—Michael Glasmeier and Karin Stenge