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“truth” is the title of a series of book-objects by the artist Ole Schwarz.

Each book has pages made out of synthetic material, such as soft PVC, silicone or rubber, and is bound in either leather or paper.
The books lie open on transparent acrylic stands above mirrors which are supported by bases made from untreated MDF. The base continues upwards to form a bell jar that encloses the entire exhibit. All the pieces bear the name “truth” as well as an index number.
The collection of books spans the breadth of so-called “genre associations”. Different choices concerning format in terms of the thickness of the book as well as the size and colour of the pages, the colour and texture of the leather, embossing, gilding and appliqués all have a role to play here. This is also true of the relative size of the plinth, the bell jar and the piece itself. The following could be considered examples of different book categories; encyclopaedias, diaries, holy books, autograph albums, atlases, etc.

A book is in itself imbued with complex meaning:
As an educational tool, the book is representative of knowledge and free thinking, a symbol of the democratization of knowledge as well as an important signifier in art.
It is in books that perceptions and ideologies, manifestos and laws, fantasies and utopias, pictures and stories, personal records and historical documents are laid out. Publicity meets secrecy, incineration meets dissemination, profanity meets meaning, healing meets incitement, exclusivity meets mass production, status meets content.truth#6
In this way, the books of the “truth” series generate a creative tension of opposites.
This item, supposedly so valuable, has its intended function removed and is put forward as an object of contemplation. Yet the valuable book is devoid of content. The nature of its presentation simultaneously invokes parallels with both an altar bible and a butterfly in an insect collection.
On the one hand, the mirror fulfils the practical purpose of making the back of the book visible, and on the other hand, the fact that it lies flat in darkness at the bottom of the vitrine creates the impression that the book is defying gravity.
Materials such as PVC and leather, MDF and glass throw up oppositions between what is considered "profane” and “sacrosanct”, “significant” and “banal”.
The aforementioned transgressions in form lend an ironic balance to the portentousness of the words used to describe them. This is continued in the title, which makes use of a term that deals in absolutes but at the same time contradicts itself with its seriality.
In the context of faith and religion, the notion of ‘truth’ is necessarily an inherent part of a belief system. The book of all books is the Bible, the word of God, the basis of the Christian faith and the foundation of western cultural history. If art or science claim the notion of 'truth' for their own theories of cognition at a particular time, then they adopt sacred traits and become a hybrid of science and religion or art and religion.
The creation of a series of different books can be considered a formal investigation of the basic “book” form, which, with its wide range of variance, adds even more layers of depth to the overall project.
The concept calls on conventions of presentation which elicit the devout, reverential attention of the observer. This manner of exhibiting objects is well known in both religious and secular contexts, in the exhibition of relics, art, historical artefacts and scientific objects.
Since the Age of Enlightenment, holy sites and places of worship, the hinges of ideology and the swing doors of the search for meaning have been present not just in faith and religion but increasingly in art and science too.
This exhibition can be seen as a meditation upon the perception of truth. These new works by Ole Schwarz open up a projected area of ambivalence, which, with reference to abundance, takes the observer along the avenues of thought behind each particular book.

truth #1The first exhibition took place in August and September in 2011 at the St. Johannes Evangelist Church. 13 objects were on display.
With its unostentatious brickwork, the unfurnished church provides the exhibition “truth” with a unique space in terms of both form and content. The restrained grandiosity of the church nave is brought out by the scattered light reflections of the illuminated plinths, with the points of light on the walls and vaults forming an intangible counterpoint to the pieces on display. The effect on the space is reminiscent of that used in museums to present light-sensitive works.
Until 2002, the St. Johannes Evangelist Church served as a book archive for Berlin's Humboldt University. With this exhibition it will temporarily be used as an archive once again.

Further exhibitions are in preparation.