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Three to one im AOK Gebäude

Sound installation by Max Neuhaus, documenta 9, 1992

The sound installation "Three to One" of the artist Max Neuhaus was developed in 1992 for documenta 9. After the end of the exhibition, AOK agreed to permanently house the work of art, which was actually meant to be temporary, in the staircase of the listed building on Friedrichsplatz.

Max Neuhaus - originally a musician himself - is one of the pioneers in work with sound and music in visual art. Through music and sound, he changes an existing space in such a way that a new atmosphere is produced for the place in question. The sound installation in the AOK building is, in this sense, typical of Neuhaus' approach. Here, he remodelled the existing context of a typical 1950s building in Kassel into an artistic space, which, through sound, can be experienced in a new way, even in terms of its specific architectural quality and its respective lighting situation.
The staircase connects the centres of three large, glazed rooms. Each floor has its own tone and three silent places, each coloured by a sound.

The colours of these three tones mix in different ways with the noises from outside. Sound images from outside pervade them, colour them and then let them each emerge in their original style.

If you go up the staircase for the first time, the differences between the floors are very subtle, but clear. When you go down, the memories of what you have heard combine the differences to form a differentiated whole. You too can experience the work of art "Three to One" in the AOK building at Friedrichsplatz. The building itself bears witness to the architecture of the 1950s.