The Falling of the Books...

A Research and Exhibition Project

Various artists

The falling of the books… is a subjective reading of the Library of It's Moving from I to it, FormContent's current program.

It's Moving from I to It is a 15-month program on visual language, abstraction, disappearance and the object. With a nomadic format and limited time span, it uses fiction as its main tool to reflect on cultural production. The program takes the format of a script and develops gradually through insertion of scenes, which can be either commissioned texts, events and exhibitions based on an outline written by FormContent. Its focus is on the role of language as a structuring device, on nomadism in relation to hosting, on knowledge production and questions of authorship.

The falling of the books... is conceived as an open structure to generate an overlap of interests, it is framed as a cumulative number of sections, open to other institutions and conceptual entities to add materials and exchange content, but also as a platform to host events and activate its content. It has been conceived by FormContent in dialogue with Beirut, and is structured through five sections, each existing out of a mixture of materials such as You Tube video's, music files, documentation of lectures, books, excerpts of texts, images and artworks by Åbäke, Goldin+Senneby, Oliver Laric, Pilvi Takala, Harald Thys and Jos De Gruyter. The materials have been suggested by the various contributors to the program of FormContent, Kunsthalle Lissabon and Beirut.

Section 1 - A movement from I to It

This section is focused on notions of nomadism and hosting, which can be addressed from the perspective of the institution towards its public, the artists towards their environment or the subject in relation to the artwork.

With readings by Hannah Arendt, Maurice Blanchot, Sylvère Lotringer, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Francesco Pedraglio, Sam Shepard, Laurence Sterne, Pieternel Vermoortel and Virginia Woolf; and images and artworks by Michaël Borremans, Bartolome Esteban Murillo, Emmet Gowin, Howard Hawks and Klaus Nomi, among others.

Section 2 - The librarian

This section is centered on the ownership and distribution of information: the question of authorship and our ability to recognize or blur it. How much structure is needed for the viewer to understand a singular manifestation? How much information is needed for cultural production, for commissioning, for distribution? WIth readings by T.S. Eliot, Vilém Flusser, Witold Gombrowicz, Richard Hughes, Thomas Mann, Luigi Pirandello and Anca Rujoiu; and videos by John Berger and Andrew Kerton, among others.

Section 3 - How am I talking

A question that applies to FormContent, and other spaces of practice, as an institution. This section explores the use of fiction in assembling a program, the types of language that are used to create an institution and the impact of narrative both on the works of art and their distribution. How do artistic practices relate to an outside environment? With readings by Gregory Bateson, Paul Becker, Jorge Luis Borges, Julia Calver, Gilles Deleuze and Chris Kraus; and images and artworks by Cecil Beaton, Oliver Laric, Titian, Harald Thys and Jos de Gruyter, among others.

Section 4 - Tell Me What You Are, What You Really, Really Are

The section of a fragment, or vice versa, on the tangible and intangible of an (art) institution, what it is and what it stages to be, between the lines of 'Willkür' (or arbitrariness) and political will. What is inside and what is outside? How does its existence within a historical context differ from subjective memories and imaginations? Can we read an institution as anti-hero, or as open form that is 'perceptively ambiguous'? With readings by Mikhail Bulgakov, Nina Möntmann, Gerald Raunig and Khalil Rabah; and images and artworks by Åbäke, Aurélien Froment, Sture Johannesson and Roman Ondak, among others.

Section 5 - Agnosia – but not a matter of disease

By taking visual associative agnosia as a starting point, a reference, or simply a metaphor, this section explores the ambiguous relation between (art) institutions (and the institution of art) and their variety of audiences. It looks into the lack or difficulty of (mutual) recognition, the unconscious or consciously produced misperceptions and misinterpretations, and what these create. With readings by Charles Esche, Herman Melville, Jacques Ranciere and Jan Verwoert; and images and artworks by Bas Jan Ader, Pilvi Takala and Isidoro Valcarcel Medina, among others.

The Falling of the Books... was made possible with technical support from Townhouse Gallery.