The elements that I’m focussing on – words, seeds and something that has been lost.
Seeds – plants as part of the language of an area. Language as a reflection of the landscape. Plants individually remain the same across generations, but words mutate readily and rapidly.
The physical and haptic experience of visiting a library is different now to when I was a child. There was the smell of the pages of books, cardboard envelopes in which the book card was placed whilst on loan, the wooden boxes these were kept in. There was also the feeling of walking into a world of the written word, with a few audio books on tape.
Looking back at why I choose to name the project the Lost Library? Libraries had been declining and I had been projecting into the future – thinking: what will become of libraries? But maybe what is more useful to consider is what have we already lost? What sticks most firmly in my mind is the physical experience of being a room full of books. The gestures I use when being in this space and an interaction with the text there both being core elements to my exploration.
These elements being central, I intend to physically be and respond to the next library I’m performing in alternating at set intervals between responding through gesture and reading / consuming the text in some way. For instance – the Fibonacci Sequence of numbers is linked to patterns in plants growth and I have previously taken words from pages (in a dictionary) relating to that sequence, so now I’ll pick up books in that manner. Choosing books using the sequence 1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21 etc. The sequence could be used to choose which books on each shelf, which page and which word. These words could be recorded and passed on to the next library I visit through documentation.
The other idea relating to my methods is to audio record the sounds within the library during my performance (I would be mute) and then transcribe this to pass on to the next library I visit.
These modes could work together, one is relating to my actions for the duration of the performance, the other to preservation of a certain time and place and a creation of a chain of withdrawal and deposit in libraries.
So preparing documentation from my previous three appearances to pass on to the next library I visit is my next step.