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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

The Fridericianum is a museum in Kassel, Germany. Built in 1779, it is one of the oldest public museums in Europe. The quintennial art festival documenta is centred on the site.

The Fridericianum was designed by Simon Louis du Ry and originally housed the state library of Hesse, the art collections of the Hessian landgraves, collections of antiques, weaponry, natural history, astronomy and physics, cork models of antique buildings, and wax figures of historic Hessian landgraves. However, the exhibits were moved into other museums in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and the library was heavily damaged in World War II, after which the surviving books were moved into the Kassel University Library.

Today the Fridericianum hosts temporary art exhibitions put on by the city of Kassel, the exhibition hall Fridericianum and the Kasseler Kunstverein, as well as documenta. In 2011, it hosted the first exhibition of Danh Vo's “We the People”, for which the artist recast a life-size Statue of Liberty from 30 tons of copper sheets.

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