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telewissen «The People's Documenta» | dokumenta der Leute
telewissen, «The People's Documenta», 1972
dokumenta der Leute | Filmstill | © telewissen

telewissen «The People's Documenta» | dokumenta der Leutetelewissen «The People's Documenta» | play video
Kassel | Germany | 6 h

«The People's Documenta»

The 'telewissen' group films a 'people's documenta' outside the doors of the actual exhibition. Our camera sees the people on the street, immediately afterwards we show them their pictures on the monitors on the street. We use video as a means of discovery and communication, and want to play a part in finding new aspects of reality. In contributing to the science of mankind with moving, audible, but nothing more than mosaic-like, details. In making the everyday conscious as an experience, visible as a story. In creating a basis for improved communications. With communication stimulated in this way, long talks begin about everything under the sun.

The 'people's documenta' is made up of six hours of raw documentary footage showing visitors to the 'documenta 5' being questioned. The simultaneous playback possible with the video equipment then still unfamiliar to the general public was a productive aid in stimulating communicative situations in the public domain.
In line with its name ('telewissen' = 'teleknowledge'), the group deployed video to the end of encouraging critical public participation in such diverse fields as education, psychology, alternative TV, media centres, the arts and documentation. This frequently resulted in dynamic production processes involving school pupils, students, engineers, graphic designers and teachers. The group followed up its activities at 'documenta 5' by participating in 'Projekt ‘74' and 'documenta 6', 1977.