PRINT February 1982

Paradise and Lunch: Advertising’s Architecture of Heaven

Wir kommen alle, alle, alle in den Himmel” (All, all, all of us will get into heaven): this is a line from one of the best-known German carnival songs. However, we will get there only after death.

The saying that has lovers living in heaven on earth even tells us which heaven they live in: the seventh. The lover in a German hit song of the ’30s that is still popular today promises his girl to dance with her into heaven.

Situations in which we feel extreme pleasure are described as heavenly, in the vernacular. (Heaven is off limits for people we would rather see “go to hell.”)

As a maxim for Documenta 7 (to open in Kassel in June 1982) Rudi Fuchs, the director of this important exhibition of contemporary art, stated that “we must not abandon the great human goal to reconstruct paradise, even though at the moment we can only describe it in fragments and write fairytales about it.”

What is it

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. Please sign in below.

Not registered for Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW and save up to 65% off the newsstand price for full online access to this issue and our archive.

Order the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.