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Museum Fridericianum

Lettering for the first documenta 

in front of the museum Fridericianum, 1955

© documenta archiv / Photo: Werner Lengemann

The Museum Fridericianum has served as a central exhibition venue for all documenta exhibitions since the first documenta in 1955. From 1769 to 1779, the architect Simon Louis du Ry (1726 - 1799) erected the building on behalf of Landgrave Friedrich II (1720 - 1785) in the early classicist style. In 1779, the Fridericianum was the first public museum building on the European continent to open its collections to wide parts of the population. The two-storey building housed the landgrave’s art and antique collections and a large library. The Zwehrenturm is attached to the wing on the right-hand side. At the beginning of the 18th century, an observatory was set up in Kassel's only medieval gate tower. From documenta 3 (1964) on there were also exhibition areas in the various tower floors. After the destruction during the Second World War, the state of Hesse rebuilt the museum and tower (completion in spring 1982).