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.