In Pursuit of Perpetual Motion

Perhaps my old age and fearfulness deceive me, but I suspect that the human species — the unique species — is about to be extinguished, but the Library will endure: illuminated, solitary, infinite, perfectly motionless, equipped with precious volumes, useless, incorruptible, secret.

Translated from The Library of Babel (La Biblioteca de Babel) 1941, Jorge Luis Borges.

In Pursuit of Perpetual Motion
Performance. Vancouver, BC, 2014.
Directed by Lauren Marsden.

Presented by UNIT/PITT Projects and the Vancouver Public Library.

Saturday March 22, 2014. 1:00-3:30pm
1:00pm: Performance begins at the Vancouver Public Library Central Branch, (350 West Georgia St)
3:00pm: Performers will begin travelling east along the Georgia Viaduct toward UNIT/PITT Projects’ gallery space, (236 East Pender St)
FREE to the public


As part of the exhibition and event series titled Collective Walks/Spaces of Contestation, In Pursuit of Perpetual Motion is a performance-based project, to be presented in partnership between UNIT/PITT Projects and the Vancouver Public Library. On the afternoon of March 22, 2014, a group of 10 dancers will present a series of simple, repetitive and improvised movements in a circular procession around the outdoor perimeter of the Vancouver Public Library’s Central Branch building at 350 West Georgia St. The dancers’ movements will be informed by a selection of books that have been chosen by library staff for deaccessioning or “weeding” (the removal and discarding of damaged or out-of-date material from the library’s collection). Each dancer will carry a book on his/her body for the duration of the performance, and after two hours of rotations around the elliptical library building, will eventually move the procession to UNIT/PITT Projects’ gallery space in Chinatown, thereby ending the performance and leaving behind the stack of books to be included in the exhibition component of the project. Inspired by the mythos of the infinite library, this event will evoke the fluctuating capacity of information storage in the library’s collection by moving the discarded materials through a ritual and haptic process of re-circulation.

Artist Talk by Lauren Marsden : Tuesday April 1, 2014. 7:00pm
Alice Mackay Room, Lower Level Vancouver Public Library Central Branch (350 W Georgia St)

UNIT/PITT is grateful for the assistance of the Canada Council, the British Columbia Arts Council, and the City of Vancouver; we are particularly grateful for the support of individual donors, volunteers, artists, and cultural workers, without whom we would be unable to continue. This project is generously supported by the SFU Vancity Office of Community Engagement, the SFU Institute for the Humanities, the BC Arts Council’s Arts-Based Community Development Program and by the Hamber Foundation.

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