Valeriy Ledenev is an art critic and coordinator of Garage Library’s Single Copy project, which aims foster the development of the artist’s book. He will talk about transforming a library into a place of art and about collecting unique publications created by artists as well as books about artists.
Valeriy began his career as a journalist, art critic, and editor writing for a number of publications on art with which he continues to collaborate, since he believes that there is no better training for the mind than turning impressions of that seen or read into text. In 2014, he joined Garage as a research assistant. A year later, he became head of the newly opened Garage Library, the first public library with a focus on Russian contemporary art. Since the library collections cannot speak for themselves, the library’s work involves accumulating knowledge, promoting it via publications in the mass media, and organizing public events. As a place that preserves knowledge about artists and their stories rather than works, can the library also be an art space and the librarian a direct participant in the artistic process, in the same way as an art critic? In answer to this question, Garage Library launched the Single Copy project, which aims to foster the development of the artist’s book, a medium that exists at the intersection of book culture and visual practices. Valeriy will discuss how Garage Library initiated the project and how the library and its staff interact with contemporary artists.