I can’t quite place it
We to be
No Title
Time has fallen asleep in
     the afternoon sunshine
every now and then
or else nobody will know
Time will show (detail)
Private collection
Faits divers
coffee & cigarette
Artist in Residence
The way/ you move
Light Shade Shade
Time has fallen asleep in
     the afternoon sunshine
Afternoon Editions
Objects 2002 - 2015
We to be
every now and then
Time will show (detail)

Time has fallen asleep in the afternoon sunshine (2010)

photo by Document Photography - Sydney Biennale (2016)

For ‘Time has fallen asleep in the afternoon sunshine’ a group of people/ performers memorize a book of their choice. Together they form a library collection consisting of living books. The books are passing their time in a library, sitting in chairs, walking around, talking together, looking out of the window, reading in paper-books from the shelves, ready to be consulted by a visitor. The visitors of the library choose a book they would like to read, and the book brings its reader to a place or setting in the library, in the cafeteria, or for a walk outside, while reciting its content (and possibly valid interpretations).

The idea for this library of living books comes from the science fiction novel Fahrenheit 451. It is a future vision of a society where books are forbidden because they are considered dangerous, that happiness must be obtained through an absence of knowledge and individual thought. The number 451 refers to the temperature at which book paper starts to burn. As books are forbidden in this society an underground community of people learn books by heart in order to preserve them for the future.

Books are read to remember and written to forget. To memorize a book, or more poetically ‘to learn a book by heart’, is in a way a rewriting of that book. In the process of memorizing, the reader for a moment steps into the place of the writer, or rather he/ she is becoming the book. Maybe the ability to learn a whole book by heart is relative to what book you choose, the time you invest, and perhaps your skills. But, however much or well you learn something by heart you have to keep practicing it otherwise you will forget it again. Perhaps by the time you reach the end you will have forgotten the beginning. Learning a book by heart is an ongoing activity and doing. There is nothing final or material to achieve, the practice of learning a book by heart is a continuous process of remembering and forgetting.

concept: Mette Edvardsen
with: Angela Goh, Aaron Virdee, Alexandra Napier, Bruno de Wachter, Camilla Høg, Caroline Daish, Chloe Fisher, David Helbich, Dominik Smaruj, Elly Clarke, Ewa Chmielewska, Giota Bibli, Helena Polasik, Irena Radmanovic, Irini Tsava, Isadora Angelini, Jaanika Tammaru, Jan Kühling, Johan Sonnenschein, Kaarel Targo, Kamil Malecki, Kaija M. Kalvet, Katarzyna Stankiewicz, Katja Dreyer, Kristien Van den Brande, Kristine Øren, Kristo Veinberg, Laura Niils, Lilia Mestre, Lizzie Thompson, Luigi Pignati, Mari Matre Larsen, Marit Ødegaard, Maria Psarologou, Marios Kritikopoulos, Martin Slaatto, Mette Edvardsen, Mihkel Kallaste, Moqapi Selassie, Muna Mussie, Patricia Woods, Philip Holyman, Pivinnguaq Mørch, Rauno Polman, Razan Akramawy, Rhiannon Newton, Rosemary Lee, Sarah Ludi, Sara Masotti, Sébastien Hendrickx, Sonia Si Ahmed, Staffan Eek, Tiziana Penna, Ulf Nilseng, Usama Zurba, Vincent Dunoyer, Wouter Krokaert, ...

production assistant: Maya Wilsens
production: Mette Edvardsen/ Athome, Manyone
co-production: Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels), DanceUmbrella (London), Dubbelspel - STUK Kunstencentrum & 30CC (Leuven)
supported by: Norsk Kulturråd, Fond for Lyd og Bilde, Fond for UtUtøvende Kunstnere, Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Flemish Authorities
special thanks to: Kaaitheater (Brussels), Bibliothèque royale de Belgique/Koninklijke Bibliotheek van België (Brussels), Sarah Vanhee, Helga Duchamps

title: "Time has fallen asleep in the afternoon sunshine" is a sentence from a book by Alexander Smith appearing in Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (1953).


Nordnorsk Kunstsenter& Rana Bibliotek (Mo i Rana) 1, 2, 3 February 2018
De Nacht van Permeke (The Night of the Library), Bibliotheek Permeke (Antwerp) 6 January 2018
Jugendstilsenteret & Kunstmuseet KUBE (Ålesund) 2, 3 December 2017
Nuuk Nordic (Nuuk, Greenland) 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 October 2017
Imir& Kapittel (Stavanger) 21, 22, 23 September 2017
Kortreist Dansefestival (Inderøy) 27, 28 June 2017
Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels) 6 - 27 May 2017
Live Arts Week, Xing (Bologna) 26 April 2017
What is Happening to Our Brain, Stedelijk Museum (Amsterdam) 24 March 2017
OSLO PILOT, Posthallen (Oslo) 17, 18 November 2016
Weld & Stockholms Statsbibliotek (Stockholm) 29, 30 October 2016
Kristiansand Kunsthall (Kristiansand) 21, 22, 23 October 2016
Indiscipline, Palais de Tokyo (Paris) 3, 4 September 2016
Sydney Biennale (Sydney) 15, 16, 17, 18, 19 March 2016
Mind the Book, Vooruit (Gent) 9, 10, 11, 12 March 2016
Le Quartz (Brest) 3, 4, 5 March 2016
Keine Disziplin, Gessnerallee (Zurich) 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 February 2016
Santarcangelo festival (Santarcangelo) 9-12, 14-19 July 2015
Translate, intertwine, transgress! Moderna Museet & MDT (Stockholm) 11, 12, 13 June 2015
MaerzMusik, Berliner Festspiele (Berlin) 21, 22 March 2015
Ordkalotten litteraturfestival (Tromsø) 1, 2, 3, 4 October 2014
Bonds of Culture festival, Kana Teatr (Szczecin) 3, 4, 5 July 2014
Baltoscandal (Rakvere) 3, 4, 5 July 2014
Sommerszene (Salzburg) 26, 27, 28 June 2014
Live Arts Week III, Xing (Bologna) 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 April 2014
Bonds of Culture festival, Kana Teatr (Szczecin) 5, 6 July 2013
Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels) 4, 7, 8, 16, 17, 18, 23, 24, 25 May 2013
Teaterhuset Avant Garden & Æ Å - Trondheim Litteraturfestival 2, 3, 4 May 2013
A Thing At A Time, Witte de With (Rotterdam) 20 April 2013
MIR festival (Athens) 10, 11, 12, 13 December 2012
Dansefestival Barents (Hammerfest) 8, 9, 10 November 2012
Oktoberdans, BIT (Bergen) 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27 October 2012
Dance Umbrella (London) 10, 11, 12, 13 October 2012
In-Presentable, La Casa Encendida (Madrid) 10 - 24 June 2012
Fierce Festival (Birmingham) 30, 31 March + 2, 3, 4, 5, 7 April 2012
Marstrand vol.IV, Black Box teater (Oslo) 23, 24, 25 March 2012
Something Raw, Frascati (Amsterdam) 15, 17, 18 February 2012
Jerusalem Show, Al-Ma'Mal Foundation (Jerusalem) 28, 29, 31 October + 1, 2 November 2011
Playground, STUK (Leuven) in Bibliothek Tweebronnen 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10 November 2010

thfaitas2 thfaitas3
photos by L. Bernaerts