A wilding of imagination in the Lounge

Less a physical space than a sensory threshold, the Lounge at the San Francisco Art Book Fair conjures ancestries of creation, community, and reflection, manifesting radical, multimodal, contemporary exchange.


San FranciscoCA




600 ft2 / 55 m2

As a channel for collective consciousness, the Lounge locates talks and improvisational performances sharing ideas for alternative knowledge production and communal sustenance. As a speculative project, it engages the reflexivity of the artist’s book, in both conception and consumption, sequencing new spatial possibilities for narrative forms and the making of meaning.

The lounge
Left: Balenciaga’s conversion of the Tank Shanghai museum for the brand’s first couture salon and showroom in China. Right: Film still from No More Reality Whereabouts, 2019, by Philippe Parreno.

Elegant in their simplicity, draped canvas swathes the walls and a suspended armature hangs pendulous above, contouring a body for ambient visuals that textures hyperlocal architectures in which the book is sensuous or summoned. The clarity of their surfaces delimits distractions, catalyzing a calming contemplative state synchronous with reading.

Ceiling textures for the SFABF Lounge by Vincent Gargiulo
The Lounge
Left: Noah Barker, We walked toward the music and away from the party, installation view at Fanta-MLN, Milan, 2019. Courtesy of the artist and Fanta-MLN, Milan. Photo by Roberto Marossi. Right: CELINE Spring/Summer 2022. Photo by Olivier Zahm for Purple magazine.
A woman stands in a dark space with her face illuminated by video projection onto the ceiling
The finished “Lounge” space with ceiling projections on SF Art Book Fair opening night, July 2022. Photo: Jenna Garrett

Iterating on the many meanings of the frame, the seated forms, a collaboration with San Francisco artist Jeffrey Bennett Allen, luminesce and seduce with a raw, shimmering appliqué of reflective insulation manipulated by hand for tactility and volume, reiterating the reflexivity of both the artist’s book and one’s own optical observations. In transitional moments, atmospheric soundscapes invoke sites and experiences in the city, echoing the wilding of imagination that attends the literary medium. A field of forms occasioning rest and stasis — during liminal states, casual conversations, and official fair programming — offers opportunities for independent or intimate engagement.

The Lounge
Jeffrey Bennett Allen, Abel, 2015
The lounge
Reflective seating designed by Chroma in collaboration with artist, Jeffrey Bennett Allen, during a lecture at the SF Art Book Fair, July 2022. Photo: Jenna Garrett
The Lounge
Noah Barker, In lieu of a view, 2017
The Lounge
Loewe Spring 2022 ready-to-wear collection
The Lounge
Left: Olafur Eliasson & Ma Yansong, Feelings are Facts, Ullens Center for Contemporary Arts, Beijing, 2010. Right: Liam Gillick and Gabriel Kuri, Everyday Holiday, 1996.
The finished “Lounge” space on SF Art Book Fair opening night, July 2022
The finished “Lounge” space on SF Art Book Fair opening night, July 2022
The Lounge
Liam Gillick, Prototype Design for a Conference Room (With Joke by Matthew Modine, Arranged by Markus Weisbeck), installation view at Frankfurter Kunstverein, 1999.