Library Interventions: Sharon Kivland

Library Interventions

Sharon Kivland

Leeds College of Art Library

3rd February – 28th March 2014

Women reading, April 30, 1910, Siegel-Cooper Company

Women reading, April 30, 1910, Siegel-Cooper Company

Library Interventions is a new series of events, workshops, exhibitions and publications developed by Leeds College of Art Library. We are collaborating with artists, writers and academics to inspire and encourage students as they explore the relationships between creative practice and theoretical research.

How do we help developing artists to exploit the wealth of resources available to them in their library and bridge the gap so that library users can fully engage with the creative potential of this rich body of art and knowledge?

Following on from Garry Barker’s highly successful first Intervention, Ekphrasis / Art and Fiction, the next artist taking part in the series is Sharon Kivland, a writer and artist based in Sheffield, London and Brittany.

Sharon is Reader in Fine Art and Principal Lecturer at Sheffield Hallam University and a Research Associate of the Centre for Freudian Analysis and Research, London. At Sheffield she developed the long-running lecture series and research project Transmission, alongside colleagues Lesley Sanderson and Jaspar Joseph-Lester. Her work has won many awards including the British School at Rome award in Sculpture (1990) and the Greater London Arts award (1987 and 1991).  Her book, Les devises manquantes / The missing slogans won the bookart prize in 2012. Her ongoing exploration of Sigmund Freud is addressed in several series of books and A Case of Hysteria, published in 1999 by Book Works, won acclaim for its integration of psychoanalytic research and artistic method.

Sharon describes her practice as “one of stupid refinement, trapped in archives, libraries, the arcades, and the intersection of public political action and private subjectivity”.

Femmes du monde, 2013

Femmes du monde, 2013

Her 29 books in the special collection (there is a full list below) include the series Freud on holiday, the exquisitely hand-drawn text of Ma Nana: une histoire naturelle and the very elegant series from 2013, Reproductions III: Du Monde/Of the World. Bringing together such (possibly) diverse subjects as Rosieristes/Rose growers, Oeufs/Eggs and Femmes/Women du monde and drawing on the artist’s extensive collection of greetings cards and postcards, the series playfully and delicately seeks a philosophical space of “strangeness” between exhibitionism and voyeurism.

For the first stage of her Library Intervention, Sharon will appoint a number of researchers, our own call for proposals translated into further invitations to take part. They will represent her in the library, working quietly beside our students, through their own interpretations of how Sharon would go about things herself.

“How much easier my work would be if others were to undertake it for me. To this end, I would invite a number of people to go in my place and do my reading for me, acting as my agents, imagining what I would read and to what ends (subjects are various). It is, I suppose, a master/slave relation, after Hegel, for there is lordship on my part, and a form of bondage on theirs (at least initially, for if one considers Hegel’s dialectic, after thesis and antithesis, there is self-realisation, and thus freedom)…”
Sharon Kivland, proposal for a Library Intervention, 2013

As the Intervention proceeds, a story will unfold. These interpretations will take form as a series of documents, images and objects and then be gathered in a publication, which will be launched at the project’s conclusion. 

Sharon herself will be present for an interim event at Pages: Leeds International Artist Book Fair on Saturday 8th March. A final wine reception with readings and presentations will take place in the Blenheim Walk Gallery, Leeds College of Art, on Friday 28th March, 5 – 7pm.


All events are open to everyone.

Please call 0113 2028000 for library opening times and further information.


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Leeds College of Art

Library Interventions


Freud and the gift of flowers, 2010. York: Information as Material

Reisen I, 2010. York: Information as Material

Reisen II, 2010. York: Information as Material

La mer est si bleue, 2011. London: Domo Baal

Freud on holiday, volume 3. The forgetting of a proper name, 2012. York: Information as Material

Mes mouches, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Le Style Louis XVI, 2013. London: Domo Baal

Reproductions I series

Communiants et communiantes, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Femmes et roses, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Freres et soeurs, 2012. London: Domo Baal

La neige sur les montagnes, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Les amants modernes, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Les cascades, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Les chalets Suisses, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Les chiens des Pyrénées, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Les fontaines, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Les reflets, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Messages de lointains, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Nus exotiques, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Pierrots et Pierrettes, 2012. London: Domo Baal

Reproductions III: Du Monde / Of the World (ongoing)

Amants du monde, 2013. London: Domo Baal

Arbres du monde, 2013. London: Domo Baal

Arrangements floraux du monde, 2013. London: Domo Baal

Chats du monde, 2013. London: Domo Baal

Danseurs du monde, 2013. London: Domo Baal

Femmes du monde, 2013. London: Domo Baal

Oeufs du monde, 2013. London: Domo Baal

Rosieristes du monde, 2013. London: Domo Baal


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