Project 2 * Library of Inclusions and Omissions
The Library of Inclusions and Omissions (LIO) is one of the four projects submitted for this Ph.D. This page's function is to give a quick overview of the project with short factual descriptions of its elements and practical steps. For a detailed reflection and theorization, please see chapter 05*Reflection and theorization of projects.
Starting point and context
The LIO is a practice-based experiment in critical knowledge infrastructures. Through an open call for contribution, it builds a reference library that is curated by the community that is using it. So far, roughly 100 contributions are on the shelf. The library gathers feminist, intersectional, postcolonial materials which are not, or only sparsely available in institutional collections or databases, too flimsy in format or otherwise not validated by publishing houses or institutions such as libraries. I wanted to explore whether such a curatorial concept can help to give voice to undiscovered, suppressed, or otherwise not acknowledged material. How can a library turn from being a repository of knowledge into a space of social and intellectual encounters? And could such a project build a community or connect different communities? In short, could such a project help to build collective knowledge infrastructures that in some ways are able to counter the normativity of how knowledge is created and shared in institutional libraries?
In the hope to receive contributions from a range of cultural backgrounds and communities, the open call was published in Swedish, English, and Arabic and distributed in community centers, libraries, universities, art spaces in and around Gothenburg (including suburbs such as Angered).
Index Card Catalogue
The LIO asks contributors for a short written rationale, why this book is important to them, and why they want to share it with others. Through this task, the emphasis shifts from trying to frame the actual content of the book in an arguably objective manner towards describing the readers' meaning-making and the publication's agency for the reader. The short statements are printed on yellow index cards that accompany the book and serves as an entry point and framing device for the library users. This approach to cataloging is an attempt to connect people and communities through their readings, their discoveries, desires, struggles, and hopes. It is, therefore, an experiment to challenge the problematic concept of neutrality and universality forms the basis for standard cataloging systems – discussed in detail in chapter 05*Reflection and theorization.
Temporary Reading Rooms, multiple sites
"Meaning Making Meaning", A-venue Gothenburg
16 March – 2 April 2016
Convened by Gabo Camnitzer, "Meaning Making Meaning" was a three-part project consisting of an exhibition, a series of workshops and the Library of Inclusions and Ommissions Reading Room. Thirty-seven artists and educators responded to two questions: "How do you bring a classroom to life as if it were a work of art?" (Felix Guattari, Chaosmosis) and its reformulation: "How do you bring a work of art to life as if it were a classroom?" The invitation to participate in "Meaning Making Meaning" was the kickstart for LIO. The exhibition's discursive focus on the relationship between critical knowledge practices, education, and the arts triggered, as a form of collaboration, several contributions by the participating cultural workers. The exhibition included work by Alina Tenser, Andrea Phillips, Ann-Charlotte Glasberg Blomqvist, Annette Krauss, Anton Vidokle, Barnfilmskolan, Bronwyn Bailey-Charteris, Cara Tolmie and Kimberley O'Neill, Doa Aly, Elizabeth Ellsworth and Jamie Kruse (Smudge Studio), Emanuel Almborg, Eva Weinmayr, Felicity Allen, Gert Biesta and Carl Anders Säfström, Glenn Loughran, Harrell Fletcher, Henry Giroux, Irit Rogoff, Janna Graham, Jaroslav Andel, Jason E. Bowman, Jenny Richards, Jessica Hamlin, Jeuno JE Kim and Ewa Einhorn, Katrin Ingelstedt, Lisa Nyberg, Lovisa Gustafsson, Maj Hasager, Maria Acaso and Jordi Ferreiro, Monica Sand, Olav Westphalen, Olivia Plender, Pedro Lasch, Stephan Dillemuth, Stephen Duncombe, Sunshine Socialist Cinema, and Tyson E. Lewis.
"The Research Show", A-venue Gothenburg
6 – 23 April 2016
Convened by Cora Hillebrand, Ram Krishna Ranjan, and Mick Wilson, "The Research Show" was an informal work in progress exhibition by doctoral researchers based in the Faculty of Fine, Applied and Performing Arts at the University of Gothenburg. Participating artists included André Alves, Eva la Cour, Kerstin Hamilton, Annelies Vaneycken, Arne Kjell Vikhagen, and Eva Weinmayr. "The Research Show" took place in the same venue as Meaning Making Meaning, in an empty shop in Gothenburg's city center and followed directly on the "Meaning Making Meaning" exhibition. Therefore the LIO reading room stayed and the exhibition around it changed. The implications of this change of context, from an event-based exhibition to an exhibition that focussed on the display of exhibits is discussed in chapter 05*Reflection and theorization fo submitted projects.
"Let’s Mobilize: What is Feminist Pedagogy?"
Valand Academy, 12-14 Oct 2016
The LIO was hosted during the three-day international event "Let’s Mobilize: What is Feminist Pedagogy?" investigating queer and feminist pedagogies. The mobilization was organized by the Feminist Pedagogy Working Group (Andreas Engman, Eva Weinmayr, Gabo Cammnitzer, Kanchan Burathoki, Mary Coble, and Rose Borthwick) at Valand Academy and welcomed over 100 participants, local, national and international (from seven European countries). Many of the persons who attended had books, pamphlets, and print-outs in their bags that were added to the reading room installed in the main assembly room of the mobilization.
"Utopia of Access", Pavilion for Artistic Research, 57th Venice Biennale, 11 May - 2 July 2017
Curated by Jan Kaila (Uniarts Helsinki) and Henk Slager (Utrecht University), the exhibition "Utopia of Access" invited ten researchers from different Nordic doctoral programs to articulate new modes of artistic thinking on the notion of access. Despite the topic's relevance – access to materials that are not institutionally validated – another set of questions emerged: What are the underlying politics of "exhibiting" a collectivized resource that is anchored in a local community in the context of an international Art Biennale? Would the practicalities of such an exhibition context be productive: Would visitors actually use the reading room and contribute relevant materials to the library? Rather than creating a reading room and moving the whole resource (the books themselves) to Venice, I used this occasion to document, "to tell" about the project in Gothenburg. I presented a 1:1 scale photographic representation of the books and the accompanying index cards on the shelves. This large-scale wall display was accompanied by an open-design built table (Enzo Mari, Autoprogetazione, 1974) and the printed text pamphlet "Dear Hannah" discussing the fine line when exhibiting turns into an act of artistic co-option.
"Boxing and Unboxing", Guestroom Research Residency, Marabouparken Konsthall Stockholm, 21 April – 26 August 2018
Invited by MarabouparkenKonsthall curator Jenny Richards, selected parts of the Library of Inclusions and Omissions were installed in AND Publishing's "Unboxing Room" at MarabouParken Konsthall. In this room, we displayed a range of cardboard boxes that we shipped from London to Stockholm, containing materials we were working on at the time. Visitors were invited to 'unbox' this archive in progress. This "Unboxing Room", initially designated to be in the main galleries, unfolded eventually in one of Marabouparken Konsthall's office/archive rooms in the administration wing. This change of plan was initiated by the realization that the formal no-daylight gallery space did not allow for the kind of engagement we hoped for. The new room on the corridor next to the staff kitchen was a more friendly and conducive environment for this intended process of discovery. Visitors were guided by Konsthall staff to the admin office wing – "backstage," so to say, making the invisible processes of administration and organization and finances at the admin offices visible to visitors.
- These boxes contained materials, for example, from The Piracy Project, Teaching for people who prefer not to teach, The Library of Omissions and Inclusions, Let's Mobilize: What is Feminist Pedagogy?, https://www.artsadmin.co.uk/events/3850 a selection of good and bad sports bras (D cup and upwards)], Keep It Complex, as well as our terms and conditions, emails and other miscellaneous items.