Adrian BlackwellMore Info
Born 1966, Toronto, Canada; lives and works in Toronto, Canada
Anarchitectural Library (against the neoliberal erasure of Chicago’s common spaces), 2019
Steel, glass, fabric, books, pamphlets, reports
Commissioned by the 2019 Chicago Architecture Biennial
Project team: Adrian Blackwell, Daniel Abad, Christopher Mendoza, Open Books
Artist, theorist, and urban designer Adrian Blackwell responds to the political and economic forces exerted by physical spaces. Anarchitectural Library addresses the Chicago Cultural Center’s history as the city’s first public library, an institution conceived in part as a space to “civilize” an unruly population of immigrants, workers, socialists, and anarchists. Whereas the original library responded to the specific struggles of the late nineteenth century by pacifying political demands, Anarchitectural Library gives voice to contemporary organizations fighting to keep alive spaces that produce and maintain urban life and collectivity. The library houses printed publications submitted by Chicago-based activists, organizers, and researchers whose work resists public housing destruction, school closures, loss of industry, environmental degradation, and mass incarceration. The public is invited to peruse and discuss its contents.