Bronx Lab
Performing the Library
May 1 to May 31, 2014

“The Library is one of the key public institutions in which the encounter with a variety of points of view and established value systems may suggest their emulation and/or contestation.” [Sandro Marpillero]


This exhibition displays the outcome of a workshop, entitled "Performing the Library," held in the Summer of 2013 at the Università Iuav di Venezia (IUAV) as an intensive 3-weeks university-level studio whose aim was to design one or more "library" spaces. A video about the workshop’s activities and process accompanies boards illustrating the students’ projects, and study models that contain objects belonging to members of their own families, which were used to establish spatial relationships as conceptual stage-sets for future buildings.

The workshop established a relationship with the US Pavilion at the 55th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia, visiting Sarah Sze's installation “Triple Point,” an immersive experience based on the artist’s physical relationship with this site, in which she gathered ordinary objects arranging them in fragile assemblages that evoke multiple perspectives. Students explored the rich connections in Sze’s artwork through collages, beginning to imagine new narratives constructs for their own design proposals.

The studio work also relied on preparatory studies conducted by younger students from the Bronx/NY and Mestre/VE (coordinated by the Bronx Museum’s Teen Council and the Guggenheim Foundation), which explored new self-expressive cultural identities and contemporary modes of communication.

Università Iuav di Venezia (IUAV)
Summer 2013 – WAVE Workshop “Performing the Library”
Professor: Sandro Marpillero, in collaboration with Professor Renato Bocchi (Iuav) and Valeria Burgio (Bronx Museum). Assistants: Matteo Aimini, Cristiana Favretto