documenta is inextricably linked to the city of Kassel: the world's most important exhibition of contemporary art puts Kassel centre stage in the art world every five years. Away from the major art exhibition, smaller galleries, many of which are in the southern part of the city of Kassel, present the positions of innovative, young artists. It is often students and alumni of the Kunsthochschule Kassel that actively shape the city's cultural life by organizing exhibitions or establishing their own galleries or companies. Sophisticated programme cinemas complete the city's cultural offerings and, in addition to important international productions, regularly show the current films in the animated cartoon category in cooperation with the Kunsthochschule Kassel.
With round about 15 museums, the documenta city, Kassel, has the third-largest museum density in the Federal Republic of Germany. Old masters and modern artists can be viewed in a plethora of exhibitions. Schloss Wilhelmshöhe, for example, is home to the largest Rembrandt collection outside the Netherlands, while GRIMMWELT, which is scheduled to open in 2015, is dedicated to the life and work of the Brothers Grimm, who lived in Kassel for 30 years. Grimms' personal copies of the Children's and Household Tales of 1812/1815 are still located in the city and have been recorded in the "Memory of the World" UNESCO list since 2002. In 1779, the world's first building designed as a public museum opened in the form of the Museum Fridericianum; even today, as a central venue for contemporary art, it takes up, presents and negotiates significant positions and currents of art as well as socially relevant issues. Sudents of the Kunsthochschule Kassel have always been given an opportunity to gather their first experiences of the museum as a field of work by carrying out work placements or performing voluntary service in the local museums.
The Kunsthochschule Kassel is situated close to Kassel city centre on the edge of the Karlsaue, an urban, historical park. Shops and tram stops are located at the front of the building – behind it lies the city's green heart: a central and yet quiet location. There are many accommodation options in the immediate environment – centrally located and affordable. Living costs are lower in Kassel compared with other university cities. Thanks to the extremely well-developed local public transport network, all locations are easily accessible, including the long-distance railway station with ICE connection.