…and so to collect.

“It’s a site for fantasy. It can engage in polemic, be the platform for a manifesto. It can be an intellectual exercise or a joke. It can tell a story. The form of the book can contain all these things.”

When you recognise yourself as a collector, you have to confront the reality that you will be wrestling with dual demons: desire and insanity. There is the desire for the object and the insanity of accumulation. There is an overarching bigger picture, a Borgesian style library which is both imaginary and boundless. It hovers above what is bounded and real, the room, the shelves, the books themselves. Each book has its specific identity and psychology yet en masse the collection also has an identity. As the collector you shape the collection and your personality is embedded in it…and perhaps the collection shapes you.

I am here to share my experience of collecting, my thoughts on collecting, the books in my collection, my thoughts on the books and the accidental librarian I have become. I leave it to you to rate my level of insanity and the validity of my desire.

photo: Simon Bernhardt
Entering the library…