The documenta is a German exhibition of contemporary art and takes place every five years in Kassel.
Although I often struggle with contemporary art and the meanings of it, I visited the documenta this year in June. No doubt, the Parthenon of Books, an art installation of the Argentinian artist Marta Minujín, was the main attraction of the documenta 14.
It was a replica of the stunning Greek temple Parthenon, and was made of around 70.000 banned books.
This books, were once - or still are now, banned somewhere around the world, and were donated by the public and publishing houses. In advance, a list of forbidden books of around the world (120,000 titles) was published.
Here only a few titles: George Orwell-Animal Farm / Boris Leonidovich Pasternak-Doctor Zhivago / Erich Maria Remarque-All Quiet on the Western Front / Salman Rushdie -The Satanic Verses / Mark Twain -The Adventures of Tom Sawyer / Leo Nikolayevich Tolstoy: The Kingdom of God Is Within You / Antoine de Saint-Exupéry- The Little Prince and many many more.
The Parthenon of books, a symbol of democracy and free speech and a reminder that literary censorship still exists today, was built on the Kasseler Friedrichsplatz, a site where German Nazis burned books by Jewish or Marxist writers in 1933.
In June, when I visited the documenta, the Parthenon of Books wasn't finished completely. On one side, the books were still missing.
During the 3 month of exhibition, they finished it and the last book was installed on the 9th of September by the artist Marta Minujín personally.
It was the book 'La primavera romana della signora Stone' (The Roman Spring Of Mrs Stone) by Tennessee Williams.
One day later the dismantling of The Parthenon of Books began. All the once forbidden books were given back to the public, to be read again. As I heard, lots of people were coming to pick up one of the books, which was a part of this really spectacular construction.