All weekend, pairs and clusters of books will be sold at low prices, with the pairings and groupings of titles yielding artistic effect and functioning as a form of political commentary. The event is a Book Fair Expo environment called Added Value inside the SFMOMA, created in partnership with the Friends of SF Public Library. The event happens in the free space of the upstairs lobby in the Museum. We (the Prelinger Library) were tapped by lead artist Stephanie Syjuco to collaborate with her and with Related Tactics to choose the books and create the book combinations, and we’ve been working on it all summer! The Library will be open for research and browsing on Sunday the 23rd, so we’re only posting Saturday the 22nd on the front page calendar but we will be there all weekend.
Prelinger Library Artist Statement:
The Prelinger Library in San Francisco (established 2004) is organized to challenge the convention of the book as an individual object and the reader as an isolated individual. Every item on our shelves is positioned in relation to those around it, creating topical associations and pointed juxtapositions that activate shelf-structure as a method of criticism. Historical documents are shelved next to secondary works that derive from them and that prove or disprove legacy ideas, offering users the opportunity to triangulate between past and present, cause and effect, and to intervene in the long arc of history. We view access to history as a precondition to social justice and as an antidote to the historical amnesia that often enables racism, inequalities and injustice. We also view book placement as art practice, as combinations of books within and across shelves work as a walk-through sculpture of rebukes, revelations, satires, and tactile touch points, sometimes all on one shelf. We welcome this opportunity to translate our practice of long-form shelf re/combination into this project of creative, interventionist book-pairing.