documenta 15. German anti-Semitism commissioner: documenta made bad decisions

The collective curating the documenta contemporary art show apologized on Friday after an artwork displayed at the exhibition was denounced as anti-Semitic.

1 min read
Photo: Profimedia

The contemporary art exhibition in the German city of Kassel took down an artwork after allegations it contained anti-Semitic images.

“People’s Justice” by Indonesian artists’ collective Taring Padi, is a large-scale banner that features a soldier with a pig’s face wearing a scarf with a Star of David and a helmet with the inscription “Mossad,” the name of Israel’s intelligence agency.

Organizers said on Monday that the artwork in question was being covered up, and on Tuesday evening it was completely dismantled amid booing, whistling and clapping from spectators.

documenta 15
Felix Klein, German Government Commissioner for Jewish Life in Germany and the Fight against Anti-Semitism, speaks during a press conference. The German government’s anti-Semitism commissioner has criticized the documenta art show for “a series of bad decisions.” Reuters

“The decision by curators not to invite any artists who are Jewish or from Israel to one of the world’s most important art exhibitions was the start of a series of bad decisions which have loomed for weeks ahead of the situation that has now occurred and become increasingly severe,” Felix Klein told dpa.

“It is urgent now – at the latest – to seek dialogue, including with the Central Council of Jews in Germany,” he said.

documenta 15
21.06.2022, Hessen, Kassel. Photo: Profimedia

The documenta 15 organizers faced accusations of anti-Semitism in the run-up to the show over the inclusion of artists and groups that support a cultural boycott of Israel over its treatment of Palestinians.

This edition of documenta is being curated by the Indonesian art collective Ruangrupa. Reuter

Join Our Mailing List

[contact-form-7 id="9206" title="Sidebar Newsletter"]