AGNIESZKA KURANT
PHANTOM LIBRARY

until 18.09.2011 | Vienna: Kerstin Engholm Galerie, Schleifmuhlgasse 3, Austria, www.engholmengelhorn.com | Vitoria-Gasteiz: Centro Cultural Montehermoso Kulturunea, Fray Zacarías Martínez 2, Spain, www.montehermoso.net

Agnieszka Kurant's Phantom Library is a collection of fictitious, phantom and invisible books, which have been vested with a material form. These publications are known only from the mentions in the books of other authors, such as Stanisław Lem, Jorge L. Borges czy Philiph K. Dick. The installation comprises ca. 400 book-objects with titles and names of fictitious authors printed on the covers and spines. These books have been registered with an ISBN and a bar code, thus acquiring commodity status. The artist worked on the project tapping into the results of long-term research carried out by Paweł Dunin-Wąsowicz, Brian Quinette, Enrique Villa-Matas, Jean Yves Jouannais and others who have long been busy cataloguing never-written books. The title of the piece directly addresses the book by Paweł Dunin-Wąsowicz. (Lampa i Iskra Boża, 1997). Cover graphic design by Kasia Korczak (Slavs and Tatars)

The counterpoint of the Phantom Library comes with Mirage. Map of phantom islands - map of the world featuring exclusively fictitious and phantom islands. They result from the observation of mirages, cartographic mistakes, faulty geographic observations, which through mythology, gossip or manipulation of geographic expeditions made their way onto maps of the world in various epochs. The map is printed with a pigment that, like mirage, makes itself manifest only in the sunlight.

The works on display in Vienna (Austria) and Vitoria-Gasteiz (Spain), among others, relate to Agnieszka Kurant's interest in how fictitious or invisible elements of reality gain real value and acquire symbolic, economic or political significance.

AGNIESZKA KURANT (1978). Graduate of The Polish National Film, Television and Theater School in Lodz, art history at the University of Lodz and Goldsmiths College in London. Exhibited in major institutions in Poland and abroad, inter alia, at the gallery Yvon Lambert in New York, Palais de Tokyo in Paris, Tate Modern in London, Mamco in Geneva. Participated in the Performa Biennial in New York (2009), Biennials in Moscow (2007), Bucharest (2008), Athens (2009). Last year she carried out Frieze Projects for the Frieze Art Fair in London. Projects in Poland for the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw (2008) and the National Museum in Cracow (2007), exhibitions at the Zachęta National Gallery of Art and the Centre for Contemporary Art in Warsaw (2009). Awarded with numerous prizes and scholarchips, shortlisted for the international stage of the Henkel Art Award (Mumok, Vienna, 2009).

Project production: Bęc Zmiana Foundation / www.beczmiana.pl

Phantom Library is realised with the financial support of the City of Warsaw | www.warszawa2016.eu

Phantom Library project is financed by Adam Mickiewicz Institute