• Introduction: Elsebeth Jørgensen
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  • About the work

    In July 2000 I started photographing peoples home libraries.
    I photograph the library as a whole and details of areas, which the owner selects by different reasons. To the project goes a growing list of recommendations of literature written by women. The title of each photograph is the first name of the owner and his/her recommendation of a book written by a woman. The intention here is to make a title-list to the project of female writers.

    I contact people who I know love books, and who is having an interest in building up a private library. They might enjoy collecting books or/and the process of reading. The project is about collective memory as a cultural construction of books, the activity of collecting and the meaning of libraries. At the visits we talk about books as objects, the need of collecting them and about the structure of the library. Exchanging ideas about having a personal home library and loving books by different reasons are central points.

    I find that recommendations and sharing thoughts about literature is a social situation based on individual memory-processes. At the visits I also ask people to refer to others who might be concerned about organizing a library or dreaming of having one.

    In October 2000 some of the photographs were presented at a group show with site-specific ideas at the Central Library in Copenhagen. Here they were installed as in between spots among the public bookshelves and reading corners. Spreaden out at the section, which contains books about books, about the history of private and public libraries, bookbinding and the culture of book collecting. Material from this research is also included in other works of “Unpacking My Library”. Ex.: “Unpacking My Library III: Love Affairs of a Bibliomaniac”.