documenta 3


Werner Haftmann stuck with the universal validity of his art historical concept although a new understanding of reality and a change of the art market already overtook the “world language” theory of abstraction in 1964. He affirmed the impact of the individual person apart from group building and styles by creating the formula “art is what famous artists do”. As a result, in 1964 the documenta missed the opportunity to document the latest artistic developments according to their contemporary importance. Arnold Bode called the third documenta the “Museum of 100 Days”.

Under the motto “image and sculpture in space” he experimented with spectacular methods of production , in how the ideal museum for contemporary art could look like. By using an “architectural space management” a binding point of action should be adapted to the contemporary art work.

Another war ruin was utilized for exhibition purposes: the “Galerie an der Schönen Aussicht“ (today: “Neue Galerie”), which has been since one of the regular venues of the documenta happenings. A special attraction was the selection of 500 hand drawings which outlined once again Haftmann’s theory of the development and evolution of illustrating the visible and the visualization of the invisible into a visible relationship to reality.  Once more the terrace of the Orangerie ruin was used for the open-air presentation of sculpture. And in a "parallel exhibition" at the Staatliche Werkkunstschule, the applied peripheral areas "penetrating the environment of our everyday life" were documented with graphics and industrial design.