Added Value utilized alternative perspectives to give new life to thousands of old books

Added Value

Overview Program Blog Books on Film Collaborators Resources Back to Top

Added Value

Overview Program Blog Books on Film Collaborators Resources Back to Top


September 21, 2018 – September 23, 2018

How do the ways in which we categorize books and information reflect invisible power structures and hidden hierarchies? What would an intervention into this system look like, and how can artistic processes re-shape, re-organize, and re-evaluate it?

Over the course of three days, Added Value transformed SFMOMA’s Helen and Charles Schwab Hall into a massive public book sale with a twist, featuring a radical re-organization of thousands of used books. Added Value was led by Stephanie Syjuco, with participation from The Friends of the San Francisco Public Library, The Prelinger Library and the collaborative artist team Related Tactics. Collectively, Added Value raised a total of $20,000, with all proceeds benefiting the San Francisco Public Library. Check out the Program page to see the schedule of events, Books on Film screenings, talks, and commissioned artist projects involving the manipulation and transformation of books-as-knowledge. See behind the scenes photos and photos from the book sale, then use the Related Tactics exercise to Measure Your Shelf Life at home.

Stephanie Syjuco creates large-scale spectacles of collected cultural objects, cumulative archives, and temporary vending installations, often with an active public component that invites viewers to directly participate as producers or distributors. Using critical wit and collaborative co-creation, her projects leverage open-source systems, shareware logic, and flows of capital, in order to investigate issues of economies and empire. This has included starting a global collaborative project with crochet crafters to counterfeit high-end consumer goods, presenting parasitic art counterfeiting events, and developing alternative vending economies.

Born in the Philippines in 1974, she is the recipient of a 2014 Guggenheim Fellowship Award and has exhibited widely, including at The Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Havana Biennial, and the Asian Art Biennale, among others. She will be featured in Season 9 of the acclaimed documentary series Art in the Twenty-First Century, and at the 2018 Renwick Invitational at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. A long-time educator, she is an Assistant Professor at the University of California Berkeley. She lives and works in Oakland, California.

Related Tactics (Michele Carlson, Weston Teruya, and Nathan Watson) is a collective of artists/writers/educators/cultural organizers/arts administrators of color who create projects at the intersection of race and culture. The collective has produced projects at Adobe Books Backroom Gallery, Southern Exposure, and Black & White Projects. Their work together has been supported with a residency at Real Time & Space and an Alternative Exposure grant from Southern Exposure.

Megan Prelinger is a cultural historian of art and technology author, co-founder and architect of information design at the Prelinger Library, and co-principal of the Prelinger Archives. She is co-creator, with Rick Prelinger, of the Bay Observatory Library at the Exploratorium. She is also a field naturalist with San Francisco Nature Education.

Rick Prelinger, an archivist, writer and filmmaker, is Professor of Film and Digital Media at UC Santa Cruz and co-founder of the Prelinger Library. His archival feature Panorama Ephemera (2004) played in venues around the world, and his feature project No More Road Trips? received a Creative Capital grant in 2012. His 24 Lost Landscapes participatory urban history projects have played to thousands of viewers in San Francisco, Detroit, Oakland, Los Angeles, and elsewhere.