The End(s) of the Library: The Serving Library

The End(s) of the Library is a series of commissioned installations, lectures, performances, and workshops that consider the state of the library taking place at the Goethe-Institut New York Library. The contributors had addressed how previous library configurations have given way to new forms and revised values in the digital age, emphasizing the fact that the library is neither a monolithic system nor an abandoned utopia, but an ever-contested site demanding new readings of its organizational frameworks: an institution whose ends are without end.

The Serving Library is a cooperatively-built archive that assembles itself by publishing. Its house journal, Bulletins of The Serving Library, is produced as a composite printed/electronic publication released first online as a series of individual PDF “bulletins” from over a six-month period, then assembled, printed, and distributed twice a year in the United States and Europe. Each issue of the journal assembles around a loose theme.

As part of The End(s) of the Library, The Goethe-Institut New York Library is both sponsor and catalyst for the fifth issue, whose ostensible theme will be “Germany.” It will be compiled and edited during spring 2013 by The Serving Library‚Äôs founders, Stuart Bailey, Angie Keefer, and David Reinfurt, and will be launched at the Goethe-Institut New York Library at the start of the summer. In advance of this publication, The Serving Library’s archive of artifacts, variously drawn from previous issues of the journal and its forerunner Dot Dot Dot, will be on view at the Goethe-Institut New York Library from April 1 to June 21, 2013.

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