LLS Paleis (Antwerp)

07/02/2021 – 28/02/2021

The Serving Library at LLS Paleis, Antwerp (BE)

Open Thursday to Sunday 14:00 — 18:00
and by appointment 

LLS Paleis
Paleisstraat 140
, Antwerpen
+32 (0)3 337 03 87


Apparently, the sole common denominator of the objects in this collection—which range from record sleeves, water-colors,  woodcuts, polaroids, drawings, screen-prints, air-brush paintings, to a can of green paint, a German car license plate, and a ouija board—is to have appeared as illustrations in an issue of The Serving Library Annual or one of its immediate antecedents, Bulletins of The Serving Library or Dot Dot Dot, sometime over the last 20 years.

An initial batch of about 15 items were carried in a suit-case from Amsterdam to Tallinn in 2005 for their inaugural display in a dilapidated space without electricty. Since then the collection as gradually expanded with the support of  countless colleagues and institutions. It circulated through numerous host venues across Europe and North America before arriving at a home of its own in Liverpool in the summer of 2016. Originally under the auspices of Dot Dot Dot, early exhibitions of the material included shows at Kaleri Tartu, Estonia (2005), Lyon Biennial (2007), Kunstverein München (2008), Culturgest Porto (2009), OCA, Oslo (2009), Kunstverein, Amsterdam (2010), and Liveinyourhead, Geneva (2010). The collection was then incorporated into The Serving Library when it was formally established in 2011, and immediately put to pedagogical use during “From the Toolbox of a Serving Library,” a six-week summer school at The Banff Centre, Canada (2011). From there it traveled to New York, first showcased at Artists Space (2012), then part of an evolving group show called The End(s) of the Library at the Goethe-Institut Library (2013). A year later, and by now filling four shipping crates, the collection landed in the UK to hang for a season within an eccentric structure designed by French architect Claude Parent at Tate Liverpool (2014). Next was a brief stint of “Open Storage” in the foyer of The School of Art & Design at LJMU (2015) with a single object on view every few weeks, followed by another iteration as part of the group show “Resource” at Bluecoat (2015).

In 2016 The Serving Library moved into its first dedicated space at the historic India Buildings in downtown Liverpool, then returned to LJMU’s Exhibition Research Lab in 2017, where it remained until late 2018. While resident at LJMU, objects from the collection were exhibited at CCA Glasgow and Kunsthalle Wien. At the end of 2018, the collection was installed at Nottingham Trent University’s Bonington Gallery, in visual dialogue with a new large commission by English artist David Osbaldeston. Since October 2020, 019 has a long-term loan on the collection. But since conditions at 019 are currently very wet and cold, the collection keeps on traveling…

As well as staging irregular exhibitions of its collection, The Serving Library also operates as a satellite seminar room, conducting tailored classes for university-level art, design and writing students. This is the plan in Belgium too: sometimes students will come to the collection, sometimes the collection will go to them. Individuals or institutions intrested in participating are warmly encouraged to get in touch.


Objects by: Søren Andreasen, Atelier E.B, Tauba Auerbach, Stuart Bailey, Justin Beal, Harry Beck, Tom Benson, Walead Beshty, Ernst Bettler, Barney Bubbles & John Cooper Clarke, Gerard Byrne, Muriel Cooper, Steve Double, Shannon Ebner, Shannon Ebner & Dexter Sinister, Paul Elliman, Chris Evans, John Foxx, Jason Fulford, Ryan Gander, Liam Gillick, Kara Hamilton & Angie Keefer, Richard Hamilton, Katrine Herian, Hipgnosis, Will Holder, Sanya Kantarovsky, Angie Keefer, Janice Kerbel, Alex Klein, Mathew Kneebone, Linder, Louis Lüthi & Radim Peško, Perri MacKenzie, Simon Manfield, Karel Martens, Eugene Menard, M/M Paris, John Morgan, Otto Neurath,  Paulina Olowska, David Osbaldeston, Raymond Pettibon, Philomene Pirecki, Seth Price & Dexter Sinister, RAND Corporation, Robert Rauschenberg, Steve Reich, Ernst Reichl, Jamie Reid, Scritti Politti, Dexter Sinister, Frances Stark, Will Stuart, Benjamin Tiven, Edward Wadsworth, Stephen Willats, and Wire.

Excerpts from original texts by: Albert Angelo, Tauba Auerbach, Stuart Bailey, Lars Bang Larsen, Dexter Bang Sinister, Justin Beal, Mark Beasley, Mark Beasley & Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, Lucas Benjamin, Michael Bracewell & Jon Wilde, David Crowley, Dimma Davidoff, Diedrich Diederichsen, Eli Diner & Sanya Kantarovsky, Umberto Eco, Paul Elliman, Dan Fox, Ryan Gander, Rob Giampietro, David Greene & Samantha Hardingham, Katrine Herian, Will Holder, Anthony Huberman, Andrew Hunt & David Osbaldeston, Angie Keefer, Alex Klein, Mathew Kneebone, James Langdon, Bruno Latour, Jonathan Lethem, Kim Levine, Louis Lüthi, Louis Lüthi & Radim Peško, Perri MacKenzie, Francesco Manacorda, Paulina Olowska, David Osbaldeston, Mark Owens, Mark Owens & David Reinfurt, Emily Pethick, Katherine Pickard, Seth Price, David Reinfurt, Dieter Roelstraete, Steve Rushton, David Senior, Dexter Sinister, Frances Stark, Sytze Steenstra, Benjamin Tiven, Jan Verwoert, and Christopher Wilson.

The Serving Library is a project by: Francesca Bertolotti-Bailey, Stuart Bertolotti-Bailey, Vincenzo Latronico, David Reinfurt.