Documenta IX: Eternal Teahouse, 1992

Documenta IX, 1992
Kassel, Germany

Attila Richard Lukacs was invited to participate in Documenta IX (1992) in Kassel, Germany. Documenta is considered the foremost watermark of the Contemporary Art world. In each case, the participating artists are selected for their lively, convincing and above all independent artistry. They are presented as outstanding artists, not as representatives of their nations.

Documenta IX, curated by Jan Hoet, took on and accepted the diversity of the world. Over 150 artists from over 30 countries participated in this momentous exhibition. Canada had cause to be proud as nine Canadian artists were invited to participate:Tony Brown, Vera Frenkel, Angela Grauerholz, Geoffrey James, Royden Rabinowitch, Rober Racine and three Vancouver artists; Rodney Graham, Stan Douglas and Attila Richard Lukacs.

From its conception, Documenta has stood for a belief in Contemporary Art and its place in society. Documenta was the vision of a young Kassel artist and University Professor Arnold Bode, who during the early post-war years tried to make up for the cultural deficiencies of the period by re-including Germany in the International art scene in the aftermath of National Socialism. Together with a working committee, he presented the first and most important presentation of the International avant-garde after the war.

In varying sequences – every four to five years – this world exhibition has become a tradition. Through the years many different artists have lent a unique character to the Documenta Exhibitions with their widely varying work; for example Pablo Picasso at Documemta I in 1955, Andy Warhol and Pop Art at Documenta IV in 1968, and Walter de Maria and Richard Serra in 1977 at Documenta VI.

“A Berlin pissoire by Attila Richard Lukacs which was built in Belgium. In this “Fin-de-Siede” atmosphere charged with symbolism is hidden tragedy. Not only is triviality addressed but also the loftiness in us all which in turn is calmed by way of gold-leaf background – and through references to both Christian and profane iconography it is a spiritual endeavour about being homosexual. In order to combat homosexuality in Berlin there were those who wanted to raze these toilets to the ground just as they had done to the “vespasiennes” in Paris. And so this passion is an answer to the planned demolition. Lukacs is gay. For a long time pissoires were the only place where it was ever tolerated for homosexuals to meet each other.” (Quoted from “KUNSTFORUM” Volume 119 Page 466)

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