Books, the idea, cont’d: As monumental architecture

Posted by Rob Walker on April 26, 2010
Posted Under: Believing,Politics,Things/Thinking,World News

Mr. Portigal (thanks!) points out this Metafilter post that I’d missed:

In the capital of Turkmenistan stands an enormous statue of a book. Every evening at 8PM, the statue swings open and a recently deceased dictator’s magnum opus, the Ruhnama, is broadcast throughout the square while a video from within the statue shows his image.

The post links to a documentary maybe by Finnish filmmakers and available on YouTube in 10 parts. I did not watch the whole thing. In this part, however, at about the 4:35 mark, there’s some twilight / nighttime footage of the book swinging open. I know precisely zero about the rather dodgy-sounding politics here, but an immense book that swings open, onto which video images are projected, is fascinating.

Click to see YouTube video; I’ve punched up this image a little.

This post is part of a series.

Further diversion may be found at MKTG Tumblr, and the Consumed Facebook page. Tags:

Reader Comments

I remember reading about this, in the New Yorker I think…dodgy politics indeed, and a fascinating story worth trying to find in their archives.

Written By Susan on April 26th, 2010 @ 8:39 pm

I am loving this books miniseries. You are aware that you have practically no choice but to release a coffee table book about the idea of books, I hope!

Written By katiebakes on April 27th, 2010 @ 8:35 am

Ha, yes, well, if a publisher expressed interest in such a thing, I’d be happy to do it. As you can tell, I’m addicted to this train of thought.

Written By Rob Walker on April 27th, 2010 @ 3:25 pm