Class of 2023 • Print

Louise Daly

Louise Daly
National College of Art and Design (NCAD)


Graduation Year
Class of 2023


My love of literature has always been a huge and deeply important part of my life. When it came to creating art for my final degree show I was inspired to make books that captured that complexity and awe I have for them in a physical sense. The importance of libraries can’t be exaggerated. They are a gateway to knowledge and culture by making resources and literacy available to everyone. They are the guardians of information, and give us a direct and authentic link to both local and global histories. Libraries encourage education and discovery, and are central to creativity and innovation. My project seeks to explore and celebrate the soul of the library by examining the structure of libraries with an architectural publication response to the short story “The Library of Babel” by Jorge Luis Borges. This story from 1941 describes the universe as a vast and virtually infinite library, comprising a great number of hexagonal rooms, with various floating staircases and long galleries, containing a huge number of books. These books comprise every possible permutation or combination of 25 symbols: 22 letters, the comma and full stop, and the space. The story describes men who wander the labyrinthine towers, pulling out books at random and searching for true words and sentences among the madness. My publication features the full short story by Borges. The book pages fold inwards on themselves, the reader must open each page in a spiral format, mimicking the characters in the story, unraveling the mystery of The Library of Babel as they go. My book is printed on a textured Fabriano paper, using the Trajanus typeface. Each section is raised so that depth is achieved with the inner cut outs, inspired by the large hexagonal towers described in the story.
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