Preserved - book burial project
Burial at Four Fold Farm 2011, Exhibition at 10C and Guelph Public Library 2012The books I buried were the Life Science library from the 1960’s.Treating these books as future archaeological artifacts, they were wrapped in canvas or foil and dipped in bees wax to create a sealed book. The wax dipped books become both a curiosity, a reminder of processes of domestic preservation (canning, root cellars, planting), and also a new artifact, sitting on the cusp of preservation and decay.
The idea of burying books seems counter intuitive to keeping information alive. Yet, consider things stored and preserved in the ground: seeds; food in root cellars; water in cisterns and wells. Burial can be preservation instead of decomposition. These wax dipped books were a purposefully made anachronistic artifact of the future.The insufficiency of the preservation method speaks to the fragility of knowledge preservation even when protected and sealed underground.