Mounira Al Solh
Pauline Curnier Jardin
Aldís Ellertsdóttir Hoff
Aldís Ellertsdóttir Hoff
Smaller Apparition of Continuous Future
Only scarce fragments of ancient philosophers survived. And on those tiny fragments the world has built its fundaments. Smaller Apparition of Continuous Future will use the library as a board game and your own history as a template to seek out fragments of a nearby or distant past whose meaning will be donated to the future. You will meet oracles and become one.
Only small groups of people can enter the gate at once. To participate send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include “Registration_Smaller Apparition of Continuous Future” in the subject line.
Wednesday, September 17
Aldís Ellertsdóttir Hoff was born and raised in Iceland but is now based in Norrköping, Sweden. She holds a MFA from Umeå University of Fine Arts where she graduated in 2007. She mainly works with installation, video and performance. Longtime member of Vision Forum, Aldis is currently the coordinator of Norrköping Air, the two-year experimental residency program organised by Vision Forum, Verkstad and Linköpings universite in Norrkoping.
Reanimation Library | Mar Mikhail Branch
The Reanimation Library is a small, independent presence library open to the public, based in Brooklyn, NY. It is a growing collection of approximately 2,000 books that have fallen out of routine circulation and been acquired for their visual content. Outdated and discarded, they have been culled from thrift stores, stoop sales, and throw-away piles, and given new life as a resource for artists, writers, cultural archeologists, and other interested parties.
Since 2006 it has acted as the catalyst for a wide range of creative activity resulting in paintings, drawings, collage, prints, books, digital video, conceptual art, sound art, graphic design, fashion design, animations, songs, poems, short stories, plays, and critical essays. The library-as-artwork is defined in part by the accumulating body of material that is created in response to it — an evolving exoskeleton of images, words, sounds, and ideas.
The non-circulating collection is cataloged according to the Library of Congress Classification system and is accessible to the public at its physical location and to a wider audience through its online catalog and image collection.
For the entire duration of the VOLUME project, 98weeks Project Space will host a temporary branch of the Reanimation Library that will consist of entirely new books sourced from thrift shops, markets and book bazaars in Beirut. With local collaborators passages from the books will be selected to compose a collective reading comprised of found texts.
Reanimation Library | Mar Mikhail Branch will be presented to the public on September 11 along with the performance An Incomplete Portrait of the Reanimation Library.
Thursday, September 11
98weeks Project Space
Andrew Beccone, an artist and librarian, is the founder and director of the Reanimation Library. He received his Masters in Information and Library Science from the Pratt Institute in 2005. In addition to coordinating the library’s ongoing New York-based activities, he has organized temporary branch libraries in cities both nationally and internationally, including Philadelphia, London, Chicago, Providence, RI, Joshua Tree, CA, Los Angeles, and Mexico City. The library has also been exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art and the Queens Museum. He lives in Brooklyn, NY.
2mn - m - n - (mn - 1) = (m - 1) (n - 1)
The Beirut Psychogeographical Investigation
RYBN.ORG will conduct a series of daily interviews based on an extra-disciplinary approach. The interviews will be led under specific conditions, borrowing at the same time the methodology of sociological investigation, the principles of psycho-geography, as well as the features of the Voight-Kampff test. From the different topics that will be introduced, discussed and deconstructed this investigation seeks to uncover some of the paradoxical paradigms that structure the city of Beirut using the library as a formal paradigm. Interviews will be automatically transcribed, “data-fied” and analysed during afternoon sessions. On September 13 and 15 the public will have the opportunity to attend and contribute to two decoding sessions in 98weeks Project Space. The materials resulting from these experiments will be digitally (re)organised as a matrix to generate the psycho-geographical map of Beirut, captured as a Borgesian Library.
Saturday, September 13 & Monday, September 15
98weeks Project Space (upstairs)
RYBN.ORG is an extra-disciplinary artistic research platform founded in 2000 as a web entity disseminated into several servers all over the Internet. RYBN.ORG operates through interactive & networked installations, digital/analog visual cross-performances and pervasive computing. Their projects refer to the codified systems of artistic representation (aesthetics, painting, architecture, avant-garde, music) as well as to socio-political and physical phenomenons, exploring various fields such as economics, data mass analysis, perverted artificial intelligence, disrupting auto-learning, language and syntaxes, sensory perception and cognitive systems. Their work has been shown in numerous contemporary art exhibitions and media art festivals, such as Ars Electronica, Transmediale, ISEA, Elektra, Cellsbutton, and museums and institutions like LABoral, Centre Pompidou, La Gaîté Lyrique, ZKM.
Mounira Al Solh
To avoid the great heat of the Sun is kept in the Night, and by the light of the Moon: an inexistent book catalogue.
A group of performers will meet and read titles of books that do not exist, are fictional, or were not accomplished, nor published; in other words books that can’t find a place in the library.
The reading will start at sunset inside the Horsh Park. It will then continue and move across the park, unfolding in specific locations under the moonlight.
With Charles Chahwan, Dima Hamadeh, Per Hüttner, Jessica Khazrik, Nesrine Khodr, Fadi Toufeili, Andrea Verdecchia.
Please note that max 50 people can get in the park: First come, first served!
Sunday, September 14
Horsh Park (meeting point gate facing military court)
Mounira Al Solh is an artist who always finds it very interesting to read biographies of other artists except for hers. She particularly admires biographies written exclusively for magazines, and kept into libraries’ shelves for no one to read them on time.
Pauline Curnier Jardin
The Teeth of the Rack, the Eyes of the Librarian
Pauline Curnier Jardin invites you to a hypnotic transe-narrative session at the Bachoura Library during which the secrets and delicacies of bibliophagy will be disclosed and experimented.
Close your eyes. Imagine that the shelf has eyes and his teeth are those, black, of the librarian, and that the belly is you. I do not intend to talk about how the paper will affect your stomach, but rather about what you did to the book you've eaten.
With the participation of Nadira Husain.
Each session can host a limited number of participants. You can register by sending an email to email@example.com. Please include “Registration_Curnier Jardin” in the subject line. Depending on the number of participants further sessions will be scheduled.
Thursday, September 18
Pauline Curnier Jardin, (b. 1980, Marseilles) graduated in 2006 both from the Ecole supérieure d'Arts de Paris-Cergy and from the Ecole Nationale des Arts Décoratifs de Paris. From 2007 to 2009 she settled in Finland where she finished her dissertation about the representations of St-Joan of Arc in the history of cinema and created the expanded cinema pieces Ah Jeanne ! (2006), LOV and TVO (2007), and the ethno-documentary The White Ferrals (2008).
Relocated in Berlin in 2009 she created her “object optic opera” Le Salon d'Alone and the ethnographic peep show Ami. Since her first medium-length film Grotta Profunda (2011), she has been working on ultra narrative, colorful but dark musical films involving the same troupe of dancers, performers, costume designer and photographer: Coeurs de Silex (2012) and Blutbad Parade (2014).
Curnier Jardin’s extensive body of work was shown in many exhibitions in France (MAM of Paris, Palais de Tokyo, Centre Georges Pompidou) and abroad (M.I.T List Visual Art Centre, Cambridge; ZKM Karlsruhe; Watermill Center, NYC; HKW, Berlin). Since 2007 she is the Cap’tain in Les Vraoums, a dada-queer recital with Virginie Thomas, Maeva Cunci et Aude Lachaise; had been a singer for Theodor Storm, Vercors et Dakota, and one of the She for the SHE-ROMPS with Scottish artist Catriona Shaw. She is a member of Vision Forum and collaborates with two theatre companies: Grand Magasin in France and Antonia Baehr in Germany.
Swedish artist Per Hüttner invites the citizens of Beirut to an artistic walk through their city that will be followed by the screening of a short film that the artist has created specifically for the VOLUME project. Both works look at how metaphysics and politics of our everyday lives dialogue to shape our existence. Hüttner introduces an imaginary silence that mystically descends on the inhabitants of the city and keeps them from uttering or hearing any sounds.
The walk will be undertaken in silence and will start at the Assabil library in Geitawi and will end at 98weeks Project Space where the film will be screened. The walk will highlight certain encyclopaedic aspects of the routes and contradictorily enough the sounds that shape Beirut.
In the film we follow two women who are mysteriously trapped in a library and who follow the political changes that take place outside as a crippling silence descends on the city and their lives. Drawing from Ingmar Bergman and Louis Buñuel, The Silence is both a reflection on the library, Hüttner’s nordic upbringing and creates a wedge between imagination and reality that compels us to reflect on values that we normally take for granted.
Friday, September 12
Meeting point Geitawi Library
Per Hüttner (b. 1967) is a Swedish artist who lives and works in Paris. He was trained at Konsthögskolan, Stockholm and at the Hochschule der Künste, Berlin. He has shown extensively in Europe, North America, Australia and Asia. Solo exhibitions include >unkown at Zendai Contemporary in Shanghai, Repetitive Time at Göteborgs konstmuseum, and I am a Curator at Chisenhale Gallery in London. Participation in group shows include The Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, the Hayward Gallery in London, Palais de Tokyo in Paris, Moderna Museet in Stockholm, MACBA in Barcelona, MAM in São Paulo. He has performed at Tate Britain, Tate Modern and the Venice Biennial. A dozen monographs on the artists work have been published in the last decade. Hüttner is the founder and director of Vision Forum, a project-based international experimental research network.
غداً في ساحة المكتبة نستمع إلى أحلام مقاتلي الحرب اللبنانية ومنها نختار حلماً لبعدِ غد
Tomorrow in the library’s courtyard we listen to the dreams of unrepentant Lebanese war combatants and from them choose a dream for after tomorrow.
Music for voice and melodica by Walid Sadek.
With Naji Assi, Gheith Al-Amine, Mahmoud Natout and Assil Ayyash.
Friday, September 19
98weeks Project Space
Walid Sadek is an artist and writer living in Beirut. His early work investigates the familial legacies of the Lebanese civil war: Home Play (1996), The Last Days of Summer (1997). He later began to posit, mostly in theoretical texts, ways of understanding the complexity of lingering civil strife in times of relative social and economic stability: A Matter of Words (2002), From Excavation to Dispersion: Configurations of Installation Art in Post-War Lebanon (2003), The Acquisition of Death: the Ends of Art and Dwelling in Lebanon (2004). His later written work endeavors to structure a theory for a post-war society disinclined to resume normative living: From Image to Corpse (2006), Place at Last (2007), Seeing Rude and Erudite (2007), Peddling time when standing still, art remains and the globalization that was (2011), Collecting the Uncanny and the Labor of Missing (2012), In the Presence of the Corpse (2012). More recently, his artworks and written texts begin to propose a poetics for a sociality governed by the logic of a protracted civil war and search for a critical temporality to challenge that same protractedness: Love is Blind (2006), Dear Stephen (2006), Knowledge of the Expelled (2007), Mourning in the Presence of the Corpse (2007), On Learning to See Less (2009), Place at Last (2010), Kozo Okamoto resides in Greater Beirut (2010), The Labor of Missing (2011), The Wreck of Hope and the Other Side of Impatience (2012), Beirut Open City (2013), The Labour of Ruin (2014).
Inventions and Inventories of Lebanese Public Libraries
Panel discussion with Antoine Boulad (Assabil Association), Jessica Khazrik & Monica Basbous (Ashkal Alwan Library), Maud Stephan-Hachem (Lebanese National Library).
Conceived and moderated by Stefanie Baumann.
Libraries have always triggered people’s imagination. These seemingly infinite collections of books waiting to be discovered have been related to the conception of the utopia of unlimited knowledge, and even to the representation of the complexity of the universe itself (see Borges’ Library of Babel). Having access to books, just as having an access to the information contained in archival records, has an intrinsic part to play in the political and cultural emancipation of “ordinary” people against the powers that be and in the freedom of thoughts and dreams.
However, libraries are constituted by an underlying politics, which dictates what is to enter into their walls and what should be excluded, and which sets the criteria necessary to organize the books and facilitate their location. The principles inherent in such politics determine the configuration of a singular corpus through different categories (for example, novels/literature, philosophy, science, etc., but also author name, language, etc.) and thus impose a particular logic that links specific books to the whole. As Derrida puts it with reference to archives, these principles are the commencement (the potentiality of knowledge-production and discovery) and the commandment (the underlying order that both enables, regulates and restrains the access).
Nevertheless, these indispensable directives also offer a range of creative possibilities. Alberto Miguel, in The Library at Night, describes extensively how the rearrangement of his personal library challenges the way he reads and understands his books, and the German art historian Aby Warburg classified his documents according to his own conceptions in an inventive, peculiar way, hence showing that taking stock is not only an annoying obligation, but also an instrument of awareness.
In this round table assembling librarians working in different institutions in Beirut, we would like to discuss these questions as they emerge in the Lebanese context.
Saturday, September 20
98weeks Project Space
Monica Basbous (b. 1988, Venezuela) obtained her BA and MA in Architecture from the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland, in 2012. Based in Beirut since 2013, Monica has collaborated with architects and artists such as the Arab Center for Architecture (Bahrain Pavilion, Venice Biennale 2014), 98weeks (Makhzin, “Infinite spaces of Beirut,” 2014) and Atelier Hapsitus (2013). Since 2014, Monica co-coordinates the Ashkal Alwan Library and is in the process of editing and publishing a critical observer of the city. Monica’s practice-in-progress dwells at the intersection of architecture, critical urban research and art.
Stefanie Baumann holds a PhD in philosophy from the University Paris 8. In her doctoral thesis, she examined specific conceptual and formal aspects of the project The Atlas Group Archives by Lebanese artist Walid Raad. Currently, she is teaching art theory and philosophy at the Lebanese Academy of Fine Arts in Beirut.
Antoine Boulad (b. 1951, Beirut) is a poet and president of the Assabil Association. After traveling throughout Europe and the Americas in the 70s, he moves back to Beirut in 1980 where he teaches and later serves as a director at the Collège International. In 1997, with a group of friends, he founds the Assabil Association of which he is the current president. Devoted to the promotion of reading in Lebanon, Assabil opens the first municipal library in Beirut in 2001. In 2009 Antoine founds with the author Georgia Makhlouf the Kitabat Association for the development of writing workshops in Lebanon. Among his works: Je réclame le ministère de l’intérieur, Beirut, 1975. Le Passeur, Beirut, 1987, reedeted in 2004 by Saqi Books with an Arabic translation. Les Brindilles de la mémoire, Editions l’Harmattan, Paris, 1993. Rue de Damas (Récits), Editions Saqi Books, Beirut, 2007. La Poésie et A nu (e), Editions Dergham, Beirut, 2009 et 2011.
Jessika Khazrik (b. 1991, Beirut) studied Theatre and Linguistics at the Lebanese University, and in 2012–13 she participated in Ashkal Alwan’s Home Workspace Program. Her works include The Influence of Prostitution on Tourism, Flying City in the Aerial Paths of Communication, and the ongoing One Bodies: And I cannot forget the people who are waiting there, people I have been holding my breath to see. She also collaborates with artists and collectives as writer and performer and has been since 2014 co-coordinating the Ashkal Alwan Library.
Maud Stephan-Hachem teaches Library and Information Sciences at the Lebanese University and is scientific advisor of the National Library Project. She is also a founding member and vice president of the Assabil Association. She holds a PhD in Human Sciences (Education) from the Saint Joseph University, Beirut and in the past was advisor for the Minister of Culture (2000–2003), head of the National Library Rehabilitation Project (1999–2003), responsible of the Public Libraries Network Implementation in Lebanon (2000–2003) and member of the Permanent Committee for Books and Reading Policy (2006–2009). She has published numerous books and articles in the field of book industry and dissemination, sociology of reading, cultural practices, free access to information.
Nenad Romić aka Marcell Mars
Public Library (in the Age of the Internet)
In the catalog of History, the Public Library is listed in the category of phenomena that we humans are most proud of along with free public education, public health care, scientific method, Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Wikipedia, and Free Software…
It’s one of those almost invisible infrastructures that we start to notice only once they go extinct. A place where all people can get access to all knowledge that can be collected seemed for a long time a dream beyond reach — dependent on the limited resources of rich patrons or unstable budgets of (welfare) states.
Internet, however, as in many other instances, has overturned what we take as given and as possible. The dream of all people getting access to all knowledge suddenly came within our reach. It seemed just an issue of interpreting when the trajectory curves of global personal computer distribution and Internet access penetration would finally make universal access to knowledge a reality. However, the actual trajectory of development of public libraries in the age of Internet are pointing in the opposite direction — that the phenomena we people are most proud of are being undercut and can easily go extinct.
The dream of Public Library in the age of the Internet, the dream of universal access to all human knowledge should now be relinquished, that cannot be let happen. And artists and hackers are taking upon themselves to make dreams a reality.
With books ready to be shared, meticulously cataloged, everyone is a librarian. When everyone is librarian, library is everywhere.
Saturday, September 13
98weeks Project Space
Marcell is one of the founders of Multimedia Institute — mi2 and net.culture club mama in Zagreb. He initiated Public Library, GNU GPL publishing label EGOBOO.bits, started Skill sharing regular informal meetings of enthusiasts in mama + Skill sharing's satellites g33koskop, Nothing will happen and The Fair of Mean Equipment.
Marcell participated in collaborative artistic projects like NRD Kit of NRD Van group of artists, gifoskop (interactive animation) together with Nikolina Pristas & Maja Marjancic, and did programming and technical support for EditThisBanner (by Lina Kovacevic), Flying Carpet (by Lala Rascic), Telephoning (by Ivan Marusic Klif) and The last Super 8 mm film (by Dan Oki).
He was one of the organizers of the summer camps Otokultivator on island Vis (together with URK/Močvara & EASA Croatia) and SummerSource (together with TacticalTech).
Marcell participated in curating or producing mi2 yearly exhibitions I'm still alive (2001), re:Con and Freedom to creativity! (2005, 2006, 2007) and the conceptual exhibition System.hack() (2006). He is a member of Creative Commons Team Croatia.
He regularly runs workshops like Programming for non-programmers, Social software and semantic web in practice, Command line audio on GNU/Linux and gives talks on topics like hacking, free software philosophy, gathering communities around good causes, slacking, doing nothing, stupid/smart business models of music industries, social software & semantic web…
While in Zagreb Marcell hangs out in Hacklab in mama, in Belgrade runs Wonder of technology/Čudo tehnike, Hackers lenses/Hakerska optika and Programming for non-programmers at Faculty of Media and Communication. In 2011–2012 he worked on the research Ruling Class Studies at Jan Van Eyck Academie in Maastricht and in 2013 was a fellow at the Akademie Schloss Solitude in Stuttgart. These days he advocates for and works on Public library.