Red-Hot and Filthy Library Smut
Now, coming upon this post as you are, unawares, I feel I ought to clarify the title (which was alternately going to be sex libris) straight away by telling you what this post is not, in fact, about. By “library smut” I am in no way referring to the photo books on native peoples, or the illustrated health manuals, or any of the other volumes which, in your childhood, you lurked about the library aisle to find with the sole purpose of sneaking guilty glances at naked bodies. Nor am I referring to the “risqué” novels by Miller, Cleland, Réage, or Lawrence you leafed impatiently through as a teenager. No. What I’m talking about here is the full-frontal objectification of the library itself. Oh yeah.
Yesterday I came across a truly gorgeous book of photographs by Candida Höfer titled, Libraries, a title which pretty much says it all, because that is just exactly what it is, one rich, sumptuous, photo of a library interior after another. It’s like porn for book nerds. Seriously. They are gorgeous photos, nearly all without visitors and just begging to be entered. (ha. sorry.)
See below for 14 examples which I particularly liked, but keep in mind these 500px wide version can’t really compete with the big, glossy, real thing.
Hope you enjoyed… but not too much… you filthy, beady-eyed perv.
You can pick up your own copy here.
(I’m sure they will ship in a plain brown paper-bag if you ask really nicely.)
Alternately, since I didn’t offer much by way of reading in this post I offer the following supplimentary material:
The obligatory Wiki round-up on the subject.
Survivor: The History of the Library from History magazine.
Libraries & culture from University of Texas Press.