During last month’s Hannah Festival, a short printed text by writer and artist Nick Thurston was distributed. These notes sketched some of the themes and ideas that frame his solo show, ‘Pretty Brutal Library’ at &Model Gallery, 25 July – 31 August 2013.
To coincide with the show, Hannah is publishing for the first time a provocation paper investigating the future of libraries, written by Mai Lin Li — a former librarian (and formar ACHUKA reviewer) — as part of her Clore Leadership Programme fellowship:
this woman noticed me. She noticed what I had read and, if I’d liked it, she knew what else I might like too, and she took a moment to tell me all of this, and offer me a choice, if I wanted it. Not only did she make a connection between the book I had read and me, but also between me and the next book in a long and delightfully unending line of books that I may or may not read.
While reading may be an ostensibly solitary act, reading your way through a public library is emphatically not. It is a social act and civic one too, enacted in a shared space where the needs of the individual are regarded, accepted and met, on the understanding that those rights are available to all and conditional on a number of responsibilities – responsibilities to self-manage, respect and share.
You should definitely download and read the full pdf version of The Handmade Library