Leaving A Mark

cafe(Pictures – Univeristy of Lincoln library, Twitter, 3rd May 2013)
A pop-up cafe is temporary; there for one day only, no one knows where the cafe will pop up or when? When we brought The Grain Escape to the library on Friday 3rd May we gave nothing away that would indicate a fully -functioning cafe will be occupying the free space of the library from 9am till 5pm.  I am currently sat in the library at this present moment reflecting back to the 3rdMay, and when I walked past the free space earlier the space is now empty again with no sign The Grain Escape was ever there.  When re-entering the free space I noticed a single grain swept up against the skirting board and this  now serves as my own piece of history because it is the only remnant in the room that documents the 3rd May. The Grain Escape holds a place in history; memories have been created for everyone who was there.  I think this also represents the building’s own history, first built in 1907 as The Great Central Goods and Grain Warehouse, no one in the library today will be old enough to remember the building as a factory but the steel beams on the ceilings and the photographs serve as the only recollection of the library’s former state.

Madeline Bunting introduced the artist The Chewing Gum Man who is seen on the streets of London for painting “a picture on the discarded gum that litters the urban pavements.”(Bunting , 2007) The pictures have a personal connection ,for example, the spot where he is working might be the very same place two people shared their first kiss. The artist claims by painting the discarded chewing gum  he is “humanising an anonymous urban environment.” (Bunting 2007)In relation to the library, and through my earlier observations ,I discussed how the library is a place mainly for independent study where minimal conversations take place, [unless the library users already know each other]. So, it can be argued the library is an anonymous environment. The aim of introducing a pop-up cafe was to break down the social conventions of the library and create a social environment by adding personality to the space. Just like the Chewing Gum Man who uses images to humanise the city,during Friday we asked the customers to stick their names tags on to their cup and then peg the cup on to the washing line positioned on the back wall.
Leave your markLeave your Mark Washing lineLeave your mark

(Naomi Shaw, Great Central Library , Friday 3rd May 2013)

This created a visual collection of people that visited The Grain Escape ,but equally the physicality of placing a cup on the line is documenting an existence of someone who visited the library.  By naming the washing line Leave a Mark it functions to record who visited The Grain Escape on Friday 3rd May 2013.

References:
Bunting Madeline, Policing Of The Artist , Guardian , 2007

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