Acid Migration of Culture


Acid migration is a preservation problem that affects library collections. Acid from paper in books leaches from page to page, ultimately burning an entire shelf of books and destroying a library’s contents.

48-foot photograph transformed the entrance of the Donnell Library into a giant dictionary of cultural terms

A 48-foot photograph transformed the entrance of the Donnell Library into a giant dictionary of cultural terms

This condition served as a metaphor to describe and investigate the controversies surrounding art funding in the mid-nineties. The mural in the entrance of the library was an enormous reference book of cultural words; the pages of the book appeared damaged.

Four video monitors in the pages of the dictionary displayed statements by artists, politicians, critics, and civic leaders on the role of the arts in society

Four video monitors in the pages of the dictionary displayed statements by artists, politicians, critics, and civic leaders on the role of the arts in society

Video monitors displayed statements on the role of the arts by leading conservative and liberal advocates.

The public entered and left the library by walking through the center of the book

The public entered and left the library by walking through the center of the book

The installation covered the entire entrance of the library, even the main entrance.

View from inside the entrance of the library

View from inside the entrance of the library; acetate panels covered the revolving doors, making the book covering the entrance appear seamless

We organized a panel discussion of conservative and progressive academics to discuss the effects of public funding on the arts.