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In the Karlsaue Park, in front of the Orangerie
The 9,500-m² building was designed by Anne Lacaton and Jean-Philippe Vassal and built from industrially prefabricated greenhouse parts especially for documenta 12. It will be dismantled again after the end of the exhibition. The French architects' original idea was a light, transparent pavilion, but the heads of the documenta changed essential aspects of it, citing conservatory reasons. The roof and exterior walls were covered with silvery fabric to protect the works of art inside from sunlight; and in expectation of large crowds of visitors, a powerful air conditioning system was added.
One wonders why the architectural demands of the building's purpose were not made prerequisites in the planning of this 3.5-million-euro temporary exhibition hall. Now the Aue Pavilion is a gloomy, cluttered, makeshift solution; one walks through it on coarse asphalt that is painted brown. Reflections from lamps and exterior walls obscure one's view of the drawings and photos, which are under glass. With many works, the supports and beams of the hall's construction stand in the way of the decisive lines of view. It is regrettable and incomprehensible that this central exhibition site of documenta 12 impairs the art so much. The architects have long since distanced themselves from the Aue Pavilion as it now stands.