Lost Library

Root Event

6. Werkleitz Biennale Common Property / Allgemeingut
Lost Library
Edgar Arceneaux, "Cosmology" 2003, Collage mit Zeichnungen, Glasmalerei, Fotos, Papier, Tape, Courtesy of Galerie Kamm, Berlin

The acquisition, organization and interpretation of knowledge are the central themes of the multi-part and associative installation “Lost Library” by Edgar Arceneaux. Texts such as “The Library of Babel” by Jorge Luis Borges or Umberto Eco’s descriptions of the library of Alexandria, the place where all knowledge in writing was once collected, serve as fictitious material. Structural and ideological references are discovered between these systems of order and medieval as well as present-day cartographies. In addition to the city map of Los Angeles, a microcosm with more than a hundred different languages and dialects, one finds with Arceneaux references to early film techniques and to Hollywood, as a site of monopolized historiography. Arceneaux’ nonlinear contextualisations pursue the notion of a dynamism on which all existing systems are based, and thus of the relativity of archives and collection: the library as cosmos and as chaos.