hd video, 6:00 min, 2018
Two libraries are merged in a cinematic way: the City Library in Vienna and the Slovenian National Library in Ljubljana. The Slovenian National Library is considered one of the most important buildings by the architect Jože Plečnik, a student of Otto Wagner. It was finished in 1941. The building has the shape of a massive rectangle, symbolizing the importance of knowledge as a “foundation” for life. The building of the main City Library in Vienna, was built by architect Ernst Mayr in 2002. It is an extended rectangle, which is connected to the subway station by lift facilities and stairs. Mayr derived the dimension of the structure of the library and the facade panels from Otto Wagner‘s system of measurements, which he used for the previous city train station close by.
In the video, the main protagonist, a woman, climbs the stairs of these two buildings. In the library in Vienna she encounters other people, forming a chain where they take books to the shelf. This story is a reference to Slovenian National library, where books where actually evacuated during World War II. The woman stands in the reading room in Ljubljana, gazing around, and so does the spectator: books, chairs, history is stored in this room. Another accident in Ljubljana happened towards the end of WW2, when a German airplane crashed on the roof of the library.
This project was realized in the framework of Archipelago, Wiener Festwochen 2018.