The exhibition that stands out for me is Horst Ademeit at the Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart in Berlin, 2011. In a small, often overlooked area of the museum was an overwhelming amount of meticulously ordered material by an artist I’d never heard of before. After being rejected by his parents, his wife, his school, and even his teacher – Joseph Beuys – Ademeit abandoned drawing and painting for photography and writing. He shot more than 6,000 Polaroids in isolation over a 14-year period, which engulfed the room.
In the margins of the Polaroids, and in seemingly endless calendars and booklets, he handwrote notations at a scale that borders on indecipherable. He was studying the impact of cold rays, earth rays, electromagnetic waves and other forms of radiation on his health and safety. He protected himself with magnets and herbs from what he perceived to be dangerous invisible forces, while obsessively creating this trove of records and evidence.