with Nadira Husain

The Teeth of the Shelf, the Eyes of the Librarians

2014
Performance
45 min
The Volume Project, a curatorial project by Sara Giannini

A Round table of books being eaten by their readers and of readers having eaten their books with the unique aim of creating a bibliophageous shelf. Pauline Curnier-Jardin invites you to a hypnotic transenarrative session at the Bachoura Library during which the secrets and delicacies of bibliophagy will be disclosed and experimented.

I offer a roundtable and a method to eat books rather than reading them and thus being in danger.

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.

We will place ourselves in the condition to research, to select. We will go through the shelves and choose one book or more quickly, without thinking, attracted by the titles that will widen your eyes enough to see their contents.

Voilà that is done.
We will all sit around the round table, and as soon as you feel like eating something in the book, you will eat it, savoring the taste deeply enough to remember it all your life, even if it is not worth it.

Silence.

Bon. Now it is the book that has eaten you. I will give you a mask. Together we will do the dance of the sated books.

Dance.

The eaten books will be placed on a special shelf in the library. The story of the digestion will be available. The method is applicable to all libraries in Beirut and Ile-de-France.

Exhibition views of The Volume Project, 98 Weeks Gallery, Beirut, LB, 11-20 September 2014