documenta fifteen
June 18 – September 25, 2022

Artistic Direction



Bootsverleih Ahoi, C&A façade, compost heap (Karlsaue), documenta Halle, Frankfurter Straße / Fünffensterstraße (Underpass), Fridericianum, Friedrichslatz, Gloria-Kino, Greenhouse (Karlsaue), Grimmwelt Kassel, Hafenstraße 76, Hallenbad Ost, Hessisches Landesmuseum, Hiroshima-Ufer (Karlsaue), Hotel Hessenland, Hübner areal, Karlswiese (Karlsaue), KAZimKuBa, Museum for Sepulchral Culture, Museum of Natural History Ottoneum, Nordstadtpark, ook_visitorZentrum – Weserstraße 26, Platz der Deutschen Einheit (Underpass), Rainer-Dierichs-Platz, Rondell, ruruHaus, Sandershaus/Haferkakaofabrik, St. Kunigundis, Stadtmuseum Kassel, Trafohaus, Walter-Lübcke-Brücke, WH22


More than 738,000


More than 1,500


42,200,000 euros



Download general evaluation as PDF / Download sustainability survey as PDF

documenta fifteen, ruangrupa, back row f.l.t.r., Iswanto Hartono, Reza Afisina, farid rakun, Ade Darmawan, Mirwan Andan; front row f.l.t.r., Ajeng Nurul Aini, Indra Ameng, Daniella Fitria Praptono, Julia Sarisetiati at the installation Vietnamese Immigrating Garden by Tuan Mami (Nhà Sàn Collective), 2022, Photo: Nicolas Wefers


ruangrupa: “We want to create a globally oriented, collaborative, and interdisciplinary art and culture platform that will remain effective beyond the 100 days of documenta fifteen. Our curatorial approach strives for a different kind of collaborative model of resource use – in economic terms but also with regard to ideas, knowledge, programs, and innovations.” ruangrupa (2019)

ruangrupa based documenta fifteen (June 18 – September 25, 2022) upon the values and ideas of lumbung. lumbung, which directly translates as “rice barn”, refers to a communal building in rural Indonesia where a community’s harvest is gathered, stored, and distributed according to jointly determined criteria as a pooled resource for the future. As a concrete practice, lumbung formed the starting point of documenta fifteen: principles of collectivity, resource building, and equitable distribution were pivotal to the curatorial work and impact the entire process – the structure, self-image, and visual identity of documenta fifteen. 

documenta fifteen: Fridericianum, Kassel, 2022, photo: Nicolas Wefers

The collective’s way of working was based on an alternative, community-oriented model of sustainability, in ecological, social, and economic terms – where resources, ideas, or knowledge are shared – as well as on social participation. The idea of sustainability was also comprehensively considered in the exhibition planning in all its manifestations.

documenta fifteen: Nhà Sàn Collective, Tuan Mami, Vietnamese Immigrating Garden, WH22, Kassel, 2022, photo: Nils Klinger

ruangrupa had already formed an Ekosistem (Bahasa Indonesian for ecosystem) with other collectives in Jakarta, in which they shared resources collectively. Starting from this principle, ruangrupa issued an invitation to documenta to become part of the Ekosistem. With this invitation, they demonstrated that they did not perceive documenta as the unilaterally commissioning art institution, but rather as part of a community in which the distribution of resources is jointly shaped.

documenta fifteen: Britto Arts Trust, PAKGHOR – the social kitchen, documenta Halle, Kassel, 2022, photo: Victoria Tomaschko

The artists of documenta fifteen were called lumbung members and lumbung artists. In 2020, ruangrupa and the Artistic Team invited 14 community-oriented collectives and organizations who already followed a certain kind of lumbung practice. These initiatives became known as lumbung inter-lokal members. Together, these members further developed the idea and practice of lumbung by working on new sustainability models and collective practices of sharing.

The lumbung members and lumbung artists in their turn invited other artists to share resources and contribute to the exhibition.

Together, ruangrupa, the Artistic Team, the 14 lumbung members, and the lumbung artists formed an interdisciplinary platform of contemporary art which in turn invited other actors to documenta fifteen. Thus, documenta fifteen was not shaped by ruangrupa alone, but by a constantly expanding network.

Besides, the principles had to be carved out more deeply in Indonesia, more broadly in the international circles, and newly in Kassel. Thus, lumbung Indonesia, lumbung inter-lokal and lumbung Kassel were formed.

While some artistic works were specifically tailored to the exhibition in Kassel, the contributions of the lumbung members were conceived for the long term. This principle manifests itself, among other things, in the independent and still active collectively run website

In order to underline the process-based and sustainability-oriented nature of their working methods, nine lumbung members already organized events in their respective hometowns in the run-up to the exhibition, which were subsequently transferred to Kassel. For instance, Gudskul from Jakarta held curricula at the Koperasi Laboratory on January 26, 2021, March 9, 2021, and March 26, 2022. As part of the third OFF Biennale Budapest, entitled INHALE! which was held as a hybrid event from April 23 to May 30, 2021, one of the fourteen projects was the Living Room. Conceived as a pre-event to documenta fifteen and hosting OFF-Bienniale Budapest's public programs, the Living Room allowed OFF-Biennale Budapest to contextualize its participation in documenta fifteen, directly referencing the concept of the living room as a public space of encounter and discourse initiated by ruangrupa.

Britto Arts Trust were also active in the run-up to the exhibition with the Pakghor Bangladesh and Revisit projects which formed the basis for their artistic participation in the exhibition. In the fall of 2021, Jatiwangi art Factory hosted a workshop for sound instruments and the festival Rampak Genteng. Rampak Genteng was held on November 11, 2021 in Jatiwangi, Java, Indonesia. The highlight of this series of events was the collective and performative open-air concert. More than 150 participants performed together under the musical direction of Jatiwangi art Factory on the musical instruments made of clay especially for the occasion. Más Arte Más Acción organized a meeting to promote the process of cultural exchange in Nuquí, Chocó, from November 29 to December 4, 2021, which Más Arte Más Acción entitled Lumbung Nuquí. Wajukuu Art Project hosted the Slum Art Festival in Nairobi's Mukuru slum in December 2021 and the Systems To Emptiness exhibition at Circle Art Gallery in April 2022. With the INLAND Academy, a total of nine seminars on agroecological and cultural practices were offered – from Madrid, to Naples, Newcastle, Mallorca, and Kassel. In February 2022, the Ségou' Art – Festival sur le Niger was held and Trampoline House established the Weekend Trampoline House in the Apostle Church and in the center of Copenhagen and expanded activities both locally in Copenhagen and in Kassel and elsewhere.

documenta fifteen: Jumana Emil Abboud, My Other Half, 2022, Performance, Nordstadtpark, Kassel, 2022, photo: Martha Friedel


ruangrupa chose a former department store near the Fridericianum in Kassel’s city center as the starting point for the lumbung practice. The ruruHaus – like a living room – offered space for exchange and encounters. In addition, ruangrupa took over both familiar and new places in Kassel. documenta fifteen extended from the city center with, for instance, ruruHaus, Fridericianum, documenta Halle, the Museum of Natural History Ottoneum, Grimmwelt Kassel, and the Museum for Sepulchral Culture across the river Fulda with the boat rental Ahoi into the industrial east of Kassel. There, among other things, a former production hall of manufacturing firm Hübner and the Hallenbad Ost swimming pool were also taken over as exhibition locations.

In total, documenta fifteen covered more than 25,000 square meters of exhibition space at 32 exhibition venues. However, these venues were not static, but were always in a state of process as places that lived and breathed nongkrong, the coming together, eating, making music, discussing, above all doing so through the artistic activations of the participants. There had never been so many artists and other invited actors present and active in Kassel over a period spanning the entire duration of the exhibition.

documenta fifteen: ruruHaus, Kassel, 2022, photo: Nicolas Wefers


documenta fifteen: Nang Yai (shadow puppets) carving workshop, Baan Norg Collaborative Arts, documenta Halle, Kassel, 2022, photo: Nils Klinger


documenta fifteen: Fridskul Common Library, Fridericianum, Kassel, 2022, photo: Victoria Tomaschko

This principle can be illustrated by the example of Fridskul (please note the video clip Fridericianum as a school) at Fridericianum. lumbung was experienced at the Fridericianum as a rice barn – namely within the framework of a practiced understanding of art in which the separation of art and life is abolished. At the invitation of the collective Gudskul, public workshops, seminars, and exchange formats took place here. A dormitory and a kitchen offered the artists the opportunity to move their center of life to the Fridericianum. They used the exhibition house to live, sleep, eat, cook, and work together. Thus, a space for meetings was created, whose form evolved over time from its use. The building served to store common resources such as knowledge, stories, and experiences. This "harvest" was not merely stored here, but artists activated and produced it.

On the first floor of the Fridericianum, RURUKIDS (please note the video clip) invited babies, children, teenagers and their parents to playful learning and discovery. Together, lumbung artists, Kassel initiatives and the art mediators, so-called sobat-sobat (Indonesian for friends), created a safe and stimulating environment where children could relax, play, and explore freely. Following the conclusion of documenta fifteen, a parents' initiative has formed to ensure that the Public Daycare (please note the video clip) by artist Graziela Kunsch remains in Kassel.

documenta fifteen: Black Quantum Futurism, Watch Night Service with Irreversible Entanglements, Rondell, Kassel, June 19, 2022, photo: Nils Klinger

Public programs and Meydan

As a collective project in a state of process, gatherings and events were of particular importance for documenta fifteen. Thus, over 1,700 events were held by the participating artists and their invited guests during the runtime. The opening weekend and the packed Meydan program, which was concentrated over three weekends and organized as a festival, were attended by a total of around 38,000 people. The festival in August 2022 was organized in cooperation with Schlachthof Kassel and the September edition in cooperation with Sandershaus e.V. Offers such as Gudkitchen (please note the video clip), the ook_visitorZentrum or the concerts of Jatiwangi art Factory and the tea ceremonies of Festival sur le Niger in the Hübner Areal all regularly invited people to come together in a relaxed setting.

documenta fifteen: Graziela Kunsch: Public Daycare, Kassel 2022, photo: Martha Friedel


documenta fifteen: Opening Party, Friedrichsplatz, Kassel, June 18, 2022, photo: Nicolas Wefers


documenta fifteen: Audience at the Meydan #2, Nordstadtpark, Kassel, 2022, photo: Martha Friedel


documenta fifteen: Atis Rezistans | Ghetto Biennale, Ghetto Gucci, Performance, St. Kunigundis, Kassel, June 17, 2022, photo: Frank Sperling


documenta fifteen: Social Catwalk°Kollec+I´ve, A DRESSCODE – What's Your Pronoun!, ruruHaus, Kassel, July 19, 2022, photo: Nicolas Wefers

Majelises, the Collective Pot and overarching collective projects

The collective projects were further developed in majelises (Indonesian for assemblies). The in total 10 majelis groups (one lumbung inter-local majelis and 9 mini-majelises) served to discuss how to use the share of the production budget from the Collective Pot and further develop the projects which, in addition to the artistic stances, formed the backbone of documenta fifteen. Of note in this context is, for example, lumbung Currency, a working group that – together with the BeeCoin by ZK/U – Center for Art and Urbanism, the Cheesecoin by INLAND, the Dayra by The Question of Funding, and the Jalar by Gudskul – focused on strengthening and connecting community currencies, as well as lumbung Land, a group that worked on holistic models for the management and collective ownership of land from a human and non-human perspective.

The results of the projects

lumbung Kios (please note the video clip), lumbung Gallery, lumbung Film, lumbung Radio (please note the video clip), lumbung Press (please note the video clip), and also the gathering of the lumbung of Publishers (please note the video clip) (in cooperation with Pro Helvetia) were present in the exhibition in Kassel.

lumbung Kios and the lumbung Gallery offered products and artworks by the artists themselves and from their ekosistems and continue to exist after the end of the exhibition. The product catalogue of lumbung Kios is available at and that of lumbung Gallery at

lumbung Film is a storage space for film and video works by the lumbung members and lumbung artists whose works were screened at the Gloria cinema in Kassel during the exhibition period. The audience was thus given the opportunity to also see earlier works by the artists and collectives and contextualize their artistic contributions to documenta fifteen. For the three Meydan weekends (July 8–10, August 12–14, and September 9–1, 2022), guest curators compiled the film programs. The lumbung members and lumbung artists pooled their film contributions on, the open-source-based "online living room" for lumbung practice. On the basis of this, collectives and artists were able to curate film screenings at their sites around the world for 100 more days after the end of documenta fifteen.

lumbung Radio was the online community radio project of documenta fifteen. It started as early as April 2022 and broadcast around the clock from around the world to around the world during the 100 days of documenta fifteen. Participating radio stations and artists of lumbung Radio were RURUradio (Indonesia), The Nifty Radio (Indonesia), Arts Collaboratory Radio (Mexico), Centre d'art Waza (Democratic Republic of Congo), Radio AlHara (Palestine), LE 18 (Morocco), Amol K Patil and Party Office b2b Fadescha (India), Old Boys Network (OBN) Archive, Radio Rasclat, Freies Radio Kassel and Kollektiv Eigenklang, Cashmere Radio (all Germany), Shared Frequencies Radio (USA), Force inc. / mille plateaux, NON / 'O' / (Austria), Radio Art Zone (Luxembourg), ook_visitorZentrum podcast (Germany), Consonni (Spain), Fugitive Radio (Finland and Germany), Radio Nopal, Radio Ensayo, Radio Cocina Colaboratorio (all Mexico), Good Morning, I Love You (Cyprus), and Station of Commons (Finland).The radio program is still online and available at this link:

lumbung Press

lumbung Press (please note the video clip) is a common project developed by lumbung members, lumbung artists, and the Artistic Team of documenta fifteen. At its core, it consists of a collectively run offset print shop in the documenta Halle, its printed materials, and the accompanying events. Printing technicians instructed lumbung artists and lumbung members, as well as members of the Artistic Team, and further participants in the use of the machines. The printed material of the lumbung Press was distributed through lumbung Kios, by the book trade on a national and international basis, and via lumbung members and lumbung artists in their own ekosistems. The lumbung Press was moved to Barcelona after documenta fifteen, where it continues to be kept usable in a cultural center by lumbung artist Erick Beltrán.

documenta fifteen: Cinema Caravan and Takashi Kuribayashi, Screening in Outside of Mosquito Net (Out of the Loop), 2022, Karlswiese, Kassel, June 19, 2022, photo: Nils Klinger


Walks and Stories

For the Walks and Stories the art mediators sobat-sobat accompanied the visitors on tours through the exhibitions. Together they explored spaces, stories, and practices of lumbung. In dialogue with the sobat-sobat, participants got to know the invited artists and collectives and learned more about their artistic practice. Visitors to documenta fifteen were invited to contribute their own resources of knowledge and experience, share them, and make them available to others. With this culture of participation and involvement, the visitors enriched lumbung during the 100 days and became an active part of documenta fifteen themselves.

documenta fifteen: Concert with Erick Beltrán, Meydan #2, documenta Halle, August 13, 2022, photo: Nicolas Wefers

Antisemitism and the debate surrounding it

From January 2022 onwards, i.e. just under six months before the exhibition opened and a good four months after the list of artists was unveiled, documenta fifteen was attended by accusations of suspected BDS affiliation on the part of its participants. Germany’s mediascape immediately reacted to the debate initiated by a Kassel-based blog. After the Central Council of Jews complained of not being invited as a panelist to a planned We need to Talk discussion forum – that was subsequently called off – enormous political pressure mounted on all those involved. ruangrupa, the Artistic Team, and the lumbung members and artists initially felt unfairly attacked and also not sufficiently familiar with the debate impacted by the special German responsibility in this regard.

However, when it became apparent two days after the official opening that a wimmel-picture-like work exhibited by Indonesian artist collective Taring Padi (People's Justice, 2000) contained clear anti-Semitic imagery, documenta fifteen found itself at the heart of a cultural and sociopolitical debate. After the resignation of the General Director, Dr. Sabine Schormann, the shareholders appointed an Expert Advisory Panel to examine documenta fifteen and its structures against this backdrop. The panel's final report provides the starting point for an organizational reappraisal of documenta und Museum Fridericianum gGmbH and its (committee) structures, which is intended to secure a future for the exhibition and prevent such occurrences happening going forward (last updated: May 2023).

documenta fifteen: Exhibition tour with a sobat, Kassel, 2022, photo: Nicolas Wefers

documenta fifteen: Asia Art Archive, multi-channel-video installation (1993–2009), Fridericianum, Kassel, 2022, photo: Victoria Tomaschko

documenta fifteen: Performance: Nazilya Nagimova, invited by Saodat Ismailova, Ritual, Fridericianum, Kassel, July 25, 2022, photo: Nicolas Wefers

documenta fifteen: The Nest Collective, Return To Sender, 2022, Karlswiese (Karlsaue), Kassel, 2022, photo: Nicolas Wefers

documenta fifteen: Instituto de Artivismo Hannah Arendt (INSTAR), Operational Factography, documenta Halle, Kassel, 2022, photo: Frank Sperling

documenta fifteen: ikkibawiKrrr, Building a fire, Changing clothes, Sharing small talk, 2022, Ottoneum, Kassel, 2022, photo: Nicolas Wefers

documenta fifteen: Amol K Patil, Black Masks on Roller Skates, 2022, Hübner areal, Kassel, 2022, photo: Nils Klinger

documenta fifteen: Richard Bell, Embassy (2013 ongoing), conversation between Richard Bell, Nadir Bahmouch (LE 18), and Marwa Arsanios, Friedrichsplatz, Kassel, June 16, 2022, photo: Nils Klinger

documenta fifteen: Chang En-Man, Floating System for Snails, boathouse, 2022, installation view, Bootsverleih Ahoi, Kassel, June 15, 2022, photo: Frank Sperling

documenta fifteen: Nino Bulling, Sometimes when we kiss, it feels like I am drinking water from your mouth, 2022, Hafenstrasse 76, Kassel, 2022, photo: Maja Wirkus

documenta fifteen: The Holobiente Trail, 2022, compost heap (Karlsaue), June 2022, photo: Nils Klinger

Participating Artists 


Britto Arts Trust 
Fondation Festival sur le Niger 
Instituto de Artivismo Hannah Arendt (INSTAR) 
Jatiwangi art Factory 
Más Arte Más Acción 
OFF-Biennale Budapest 
Project Art Works 
The Question of Funding 
Trampoline House 
Wajukuu Art Project 
ZK / U – Zentrum für Kunst und Urbanistik 


Agus Nur Amal PMTOH
Alice Yard
Amol K Patil
Another Roadmap Africa Cluster (ARAC)
Archives des luttes des femmes en Algérie
Arts Collaboratory
Asia Art Archive
Atis Rezistans | Ghetto Biennale
Baan Noorg Collaborative Arts and Culture
Black Quantum Futurism
Britto Arts Trust
Cao Minghao and Chen Jianjun
Centre d‘art Waza
CHANG En-man
Cinema Caravan and Takashi Kuribayashi
Dan Perjovschi
El Warcha
Erick Beltrán
Fehras Publishing Practices
Fondation Festival sur le Niger
Graziela Kunsch
Hamja Ahsan
Instituto de Artivismo Hannah Arendt (INSTAR)
Jatiwangi art Factory
Jimmie Durham
Jumana Emil Abboud
Keleketla! Library
Kiri Dalena
Komîna Fîlm a Rojava
La Intermundial Holobiente
LE 18
Marwa Arsanios
Más Arte Más Acción
Nguyen Thrin Thi
Nhà Sàn Collective
Nino Bulling
ook_reinaart vanhoe
Party Office b2b Fadescha
Pınar Öğrenci
Project Art Works
Richard Bell
Sa Sa Art Projects
Sada [regroup]
Safdar Ahmed
Saodat Ismailova
Serigrafistas queer
Siwa plateforme - L'Economat at Redeyef
Sourabh Phadke
Subversive Film
Taring Padi
The Black Archives
The Nest Collective
The Question of Funding
Trampoline House
Wajukuu Art Project
yasmine eid-sabbagh
ZK/U – Zentrum für Kunst und Urbanistik

+ about 1,500 further participants


Artistic Direction ruangrupa
Ajeng Nurul Aini, farid rakun, Iswanto Hartono, Mirwan Andan, Indra Ameng, Ade Darmawan, Daniella Fitria Praptono, Julia Sarisetiati, Reza Afisina

Artistic Team

Gertrude Flentge Ayşe Güleç Frederikke Hansen Lara Khaldi Andrea Linnenkohl


Together with Hatje Cantz as partner publishing house, documenta fifteen presented four publications in German and English: a Handbook, a Family Guide, a magazine, and an anthology of literary texts. The four publications were centered around documenta fifteen principles – like collectivity, sustainability, and shared resources – not only in terms of content, but also in their production process, appearance, and mode of distribution. All four titles were produced sustainably following the guidelines of the “Blue Angel” eco-label and printed on 100% recycled paper with certified ink. The publications are available in bookstores and the Hatje Cantz online shop and also as e-books.