DOCUMENTA(13) | KASSEL

Natascha Stellmach pen tattoos a visitor during her Agent Provocateur happening at dOCUMENTA(13), Kassel, 2012

Natascha pen tattoos a participant during  Agent Provocateur at dOCUMENTA(13), Kassel, 2012

Aug 3, 2012.
dOCUMENTA(13), Building 42, Hauptbahnhof Kassel | Curated by Critical Art Ensemble.
PERFORMANCE – pen tattoos + installation (works from Complete Burning Away)

Natascha Stellmach, Agent Provocateur happening at dOCUMENTA(13), Kassel, 2012

Agent Provocateur at dOCUMENTA(13), Kassel, 2012

Natascha Stellmach pen tattoos Ollie during the Agent Provocateur happening at dOCUMENTA(13), 2012

Natascha Stellmach pen tattoos Ollie during Agent Provocateur at dOCUMENTA(13), Kassel, 2012

Informed by the controversy around her major project with the ashes of Kurt Cobain, the “tattooed” statements critique the role of the artist and contemporary art in society. Visitors were invited to choose one of the countless responses to Stellmach’s project, but only from a pool of responses which debated “art”. This was then written onto their skin by the artist.

Agent provocateurs were traditionally “secret agents” employed to lure suspects into committing a crime with evidence. In this context the visitor is transformed into an agent provocateur for a night – a ‘durational work’ questioning the merits, ethics and parameters of contemporary art. The tattoos become both a fashion accessory – with Stellmach tattooing to complement “the evening’s antics and outfit” – as well as a positive transformation of the author’s initial, often highly-charged sentiment. For Agent Provocateur, people of all ages queued to have their own temporary text-based tattoo, which lasted between one to three days.

Natascha Stellmach, 2012, Beat wearing tokik, Hungary

Beat wearing tokik, Hungary, 2012

Natascha Stellmach, Jutta wearing meritamun, Germany, 2012

Jutta wearing meritamun, Germany, 2012

Natascha Stellmach, 2012, Johannes wearing tom.b, USA

Johannes wearing tom.b, USA, 2012

Natascha Stellmach, 2012, Katharina wearing Kjetl, Germany

Katharina wearing Kjetl, Germany, 2012

See WORKS for more information.