Exhausted Books, 2002

Installation, Various dimensions

Dora García takes as her starting point one of the most cryptic works in world literature, Finnegans Wake. Published in 1939, James Joyce’s last novel is one of the best literary representations of the unconscious with a circular text that imposes a never-definitive hermeneutics. Accordingly, perhaps, a group of amateur readers and members of the Zurich James Joyce Foundation have been meeting on a weekly basis since 1986 to read the book aloud and comment on it together. Dora García has recorded these sessions in this Swiss club that boasts Europe’s most complete library of Joyce’s works. Her video The Joycean Society brings out the highest virtues of conversational practice, literary interpretation and the production of meaning.

García has simultaneously reproduced ten copies of Joyce’s book with all the notes and comments made over the years by the readers of the Zurich James Joyce Foundation. Exhausted Books shows the books after they have been read and repeatedly annotated.

Technical details

Original title:
Exhausted Books
Registration number:
García, Dora
Date created:
Date acquired:
MACBA Collection. MACBA Foundation
Object type:
Various materials
Various dimensions
MACBA Collection. MACBA Foundation. Work purchased thanks to Agrolimen
© Dora García, VEGAP, Barcelona
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