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Since March 2016, Random Institute is running the curatorial program for Despacio in San José, Costa Rica.
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Untold Stories

Kunsthalle Tropical Library

ArchivedHappened in October 2014
Kunsthalle Tropical

A journey of several days through mystical Icelandic topography leads to the site of Kunsthalle Tropical, the hallowed burial ground indicated only by a peculiar rectangle of stones shrouded by ice-capped mountains. There, the book detailing the institution's greater vision was buried.

The Kunsthalle Tropical Library was founded.


On October 11, 2014, a team of five ceremoniously buried the Kunsthalle Tropical’s first and so far only book, entitled Sometimes Attention Should Be Paid to the Absence of Everything (Link), a one-of-a-kind handwritten and illustrated ode to the curators' greater vision for the unconventional space in the Icelandic desert.

The burial celebrated the official founding of the Library within Kunsthalle Tropical.

The book was buried in a industrial strength lock-box, analogized to the encapsulated knowledge within a library. Underground, the book will rest undisturbed until a curious individual is willing to dig a little deeper.

In order to prompt its patrons to quest for knowledge, the buried manifesto serves as a challenge to the Kunsthalle visitors capable of locating the lock-box to explore the Kunsthalle Tropical Library, where other unique books may also be buried in the future.

Similar to all great works of fiction, the Kunsthalle Tropical Library is designed to bridge reality and our wildest imaginations. Imagine a library without books, shelves, and librarians. What does it mean to declare a uninhabited land a library?

In the absence of the usual accouterments, will the library successfully function as a dwelling for intellectuals, metaphysical thinkers, and literary connoisseurs? Inspired by nature’s beauty, romantic notions, and humanist bravado, will the Kunsthalle Tropical Library ever realize its conceptual potential?

Traditionally, a library is a place that facilitates reading, learning, and studying. A library is a servant of knowledge and an exciter of one's internal sense of adventure.

Libraries are often quiet, organized, and comprised of carpeted floors drenched in florescent lighting and punctuated by dated shelves, tables, and chairs. But above all, libraries are the physical archives of our past and present and hold the transcribed relics of our world’s greatest minds.

The Kunsthalle Tropical Library challenges the physical model of the library proper by declaring that the same opportunities presented by the local library are available to its visitors in the remote setting of the Icelandic desert, where shelves, tables, and chairs are transcended by panoramic beauty.

Likened to an engrossing novel or study, this library is anyone’s for the taking but requires effort and discovery to understand. Ultimately, the experiences of Kunsthalle Tropical’s collective visitors will redefine one's understanding of a library, encapsulating our modern memories and messages stored in the clouds.

Though physically defined, the Library at Kunsthalle Tropical is conceptually grounded in the journey, much like its first book, a now ‘absent’ transcription of human will and imagination.

The Kunsthalle Tropical Library was founded on October 11, 2014.


The burial of the book Sometimes Attention Should Be Paid to the Absence of Everything (link) celebrated the official founding of the Library within Kunsthalle Tropical.

In June 2016 Kunsthalle Lissabon was guest at Kunsthalle Tropical. Luís Silva and João Mourão invited the portuguese artist Joana Escoval to join them on the exploration. The artist added Outlaws in Language and Destiny to the library. The publication is co-published by Palmario Recordings and AtlasProjectos and consists in a clear acetate 7'' Mono Flexi-Disc containing sound recordings of insects in a rain forest of Costa Rica mixed with the sound produced by a 180º orthodontic X-Ray in Lisbon. Encased in a double-sided poster with two found photos representing two kids and two birds, in Amazonia and Sweden.

Tout est bon dans le poisson

ArchivedHappened in May 2014

For two nights only, the Réunion was transformed into a fish market, occupied by Charly, Paris’s Michelin award-winning fish vendor. Peddling fish from the art space’s front window, Charly’s quotidian business collided with the world of art, as nightly performances toured underground cultures and explored the limits of new exhibition formats.

Gourmands meet fringe performance art.


Participating artists included Florence Jung, Saskia Edens, Nils Amadeus Lange with Mira Kandathil & Annina Machaz, Manuel Scheiwiller with Melanie Wirz & Nils Amadeus Lange, Marcel Meury, Ivan Blagajcevic as Evalyn, and Thylacine. Curated by Sandino Scheidegger.

The culinary concept has been created by Han Lo (Untitled Group).

Images by Juliette Chrétien, Ian White, and Franziska Scheidegger.

The fish market and performance festival took place on May 8th and 9th, 2014 at Réunion in Zurich, Switzerland. A second edition takes place in April 2017 in Costa Rica.

À Table

ArchivedHappened in December 2013
Cite Internationale Des Arts

Dreams are necessary in order to survive the reality of life. But sometimes we just have to sit down and listen to other people’s dreams to realize what reality means outside our own little world. À Table is a Paris-based project that brings homeless people, local residents, curious tourists, creative people, and disorientated strangers together around the dinner table.

A potpourri of people, a feast of food.


The initiative was spontaneously born during late 2013 when three people discussed the possibilities of opening a Parisian soup kitchen to feed anyone at all who wanders the streets—adventurous local residents, the homeless, lonely tourists, and individuals associated with Samusocial de Paris, an NGO specializing in emergency social aid.

The result was the three day event, À Table, that brought together a wide range of people to join in eating. Guests were seated across from strangers, whom they otherwise would never have met nor shared an intimate moment with. The initiative was spearheaded by Juliette Chrétien in collaboration with Random Institute, chmara.rosinke, and Maurice Maggi.

Juliette Chrétien runs her own photography studio and is well known for her photographs in the fields of interior design and fashion. In addition, Juliette is highly acclaimed for a new style of culinary books.

The mobile kitchen, which includes a large table and stools for 12 people, was hand-crafted by the renowned Austrian design duo chmara.rosinke. For this modular kitchen, they won the 2012 Outstanding Artist Award from the Federal Ministry for Education, Art and Culture in Austria.

Maurice Maggi is a guerrilla gardener from Zurich, Switzerland, who is known for his subversive seed-sowing "attacks," as well as his cooking skills and food knowledge. Maggi’s passion for food has taken him as far away as New York, where he ran his own restaurant. During his days in Paris, he found ingenious ways to cook tasty meals with ingredients from the local market.

In March 2014, Juliette Chrétien published the associated publication in a limited edition (4 handmade publications).

The initiative took place from December 27th to 30th, 2013 around Cité des Arts Paris.

Made in Air Space

ArchivedHappened in July 2013

Die Aussicht ist uns allen vertraut. Es ist ein Blick durch ein kleines Fenster in die vermeintliche Unendlichkeit. In Tausenden von Metern über Meer verspüren wir einen Moment der Freiheit – ein Gefühl, kurzzeitig vom Leben befreit zu sein. Einzig hochwertiges Plexiglas und ein Sicherheitsgurt trennen uns noch von der absoluten Freiheit, deren Existenz wir seit jeher weit weg vom erdgebundenen Leben vermuten.


Folglich finden sich in den meisten privaten Fotoarchiven auch Aufnahmen aus dem Flugzeug, unverkennbar gekennzeichnet durch das wiederkehrende Element des ins Bild ragenden Flügels. Während die Luftaufnahmen die individuellen Entstehungsgeschichten und Beweggründe des Urhebers verschweigen, vermögen sie in ihrer Gesamtheit und Gleichartigkeit symbolisch für unsere Erfahrung mit dem Luftraum stehen.

Die abgebildeten Fotos stammen aus den persönlichen Archiven der Autorinnen Aline Juchler (Zürich), Lindsey Cash (New York), Gioia dal Molin (Zürich), Leïla Hincelin (Paris) und Ina Mertens (Bern). Der Blick aus dem Flugzeugfenster begründet so auch den gemeinsamen Ausgangspunkt für unterschiedlichste Gedankenreisen zum Thema Luftraum – einem Raum, in dem sich sowohl Fiktion und Realität als auch irdische Erinnerungen und Zukunftsvisionen magisch zu vermischen scheinen.

Die Texte blicken mit einer befreienden Distanz auf das gesellschaftspolitische Gewebe, das die Erde umspannt. Dabei steht die Beziehung des Individuums zum luftgefüllten Raum im Mittelpunkt. Einzigartig ist, dass in sauerstoffarmen Höhen auch die Gedanken auf weniger Widerstand zu stossen scheinen und uns erlauben, wie in der Kunst, Grenzen zu überschreiten. Jeder Flug, wie auch jeder Text, wird zu einer Reise in eine ungewisse Zukunft und gleichzeitig zum Ort, an welchem etwas endet und zugleich was Neues beginnt.

Diese Publikation begleitet die gleichnamige Ausstellung, welche in der Grossen Halle der Reithalle Bern 2013 eröffnet wurde.

The book was published on July 11, 2011.
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