Issue 01

In this first series of three episodes, Arefeh Riahi, Maartje Fliervoet and Martín La Roche Contreras have been invited to take care of one side of the paper. They have been regular visitors and thorough researchers in the Archive since de Appel moved to Broedplaats Lely. In 2017, during a collaboration with Martín La Roche Contreras and Maartje Fliervoet (Manifold Books), the term Remote Archivist came into being due to the archivist’s lack of time. Two years later, during Arefeh Riahi’s archival project “Un/folding Interventions”, the three makers met and formed “To See the Inability to See”. Together they delved deeper into de Appel’s Archive, connecting in their love for paper things – especially for the “aliens”; the pieces that don’t belong anywhere. Their own collections, memories, records and the meticulous determination leading to those lucky finds, culminated in Outdated Compass. Here, non-archivable and non-categorisable knowledge resonates in the now, but just a bit too late and out of time!

On the other side:

Willem de Rooij, Bouquet IX (2012)
interpreted by Gerda's Bloemen en Planten on June 18, 2020
Day for Night, 23 juni–3 juli, 2020

Issue 02

In this second episode of the first series of three, “To See the Inability to See” continues the story Outdated Compass. It sends the Remote Archivist in all directions, except north, and the silverfish makes its appearance in the archive.

On the other side:

Jürgen Klauke, Letter to Wies Smals from documentation folder Jürgen Klauke/Ulay “Keine Möglichkeit 2 Platzwunden” 1975

Issue 03

In this three-part series, “To See the Inability to See” hunted for stories, took custody of references and made a series of events cohesive. In this last episode, the stories are released back into the archive. The archivist has a new instrument; a functional compass with a completely red needle.

On the other side:

Iman Issa, Tree? (for de Appel), 2021
Looking and archiving forward towards the exhibition with/by Iman Issa which was postponed last year and will be planned anew when de Appel finds its new address for 2022 onwards.

Katibeh, "The Epigraph" by Mehdi Akhavān-Sāles

Lies the rock there over, as though a mountain it was
And over here we sit, a tired throng
Woman and man and young and old
All to each other bound, yet from the leg
And with
If the heart towards a desire led you
You were able to crawl towards it, but only far as it was permitted
Far as the chain went
We didn't know
Was it a voice in the dream of our tenor and tedium
Or was it a calling from somewhere, where? Never did we ask
Thus it said
lies a rock there over, and a sage from the precursors age
a secret written on't, each person an arch each person a pair
several times thus it said
the voice, and then as a wave running away from itself it went out in silence
and nothing did we say
and for a while nothing did we say
also thereafter `twas only in our gaze if sometimes
a group doubtful and in question stood
and the rest
was flood and fatigue and oblivion
and silence even in our gaze
and the rock lay there over
the night that from the moonlight damnation poured
our feet were swollen and itched
one of us whose chain was a bit heavier than ours, cursed his ear
and whimpered: one must go
and we wearily said
curse our ear and our eye also:
one must go
and we went and crawling we went to there where the rock were there
one of us of lighter chain, up went, then sang
my secret shall be known by none other
than the one who turns me around from this side to another
and with a pleasure did we repeat this dusty secret like a prayer in whispers
and the night was a lavishing river of moonlight full
Halla, one... two... three... another par
Halla, one... two... three... another par
sweating, lamentation, malediction, sometimes did we cry
Halla, one... two... three... excessive were such burdens
how overbearing it was yet how overwhelmingly sweet was victory
and we with a more familiar pleasure
droopy and delighted
saturated with vehemence and verve
one of us of lighter chain
hailed our help and up went
the concealed line he cleansed of mud and dirt and to himself did read
and we impatient
with his tongue he wet his lip and so did we
and he stayed silent
he looked at us and stayed silent
again did he sang, and silent did he stand, as if his tongue went dead
his gaze was stolen by an unknown far away
sing! still silent was he
sing to us! him looking at us silently
awhile went by
while his chain made noises
down he came, we caught him as if he was falling
we sat him down
he cursed our hand and his hand
?what did you read, huh
swallowing his slobber, slowly said he
it read
the same
my secret shall be known by none other
than the one who turns me around from this side to another
down we sat
and to the moonlight and light night we gazed
and the night was a languishing river

translated by Edward Amirahmadian

All attempts at locating the translator have been made, but did not yield a contact. Any connections are much appreciated.

To See the Inability To See
The Remote* Archivist References Series 01

The Carrier Bag Theory of Fiction – Ursula K. Le Guin
That Seeing and Looking at Oneself, or the Elephant in the Seminar – Fernand Deligny
Stigmata — Hélène Cixous
The Khan Facebook project: Four Rooms – Conversations with Elisabeth A. Povinelli, Shahram Khosravi hosted by Dani Blanga Gubbay
Precarious Lives: Waiting and Hope in Iran – Shahram Khosravi
Fluiten in het donker – Letter by the members of the Curatorial Programme 2011 to the visitors of the exhibition — de Appel - Amsterdam
The Parasite – Michel Serres
Time has fallen asleep in the afternoon sunshine: A book on reading, writing, memory and forgetting in a library of living books — Edited by: Mette Edvardsen, Kristien Van den Brande, Victoria Pérez Royo, Runa Borch Skolseg
Jacques Derrida — Nicholas Royle
What is the contemporary? — Giorgio Agamben
The Museum as a Cradle of Revolution — Boris Groys
De Appel – Marga van Mechelen
Un año — Juan Emar
The Passion According to G.H. – Clarice Lispector
Symbiotic Earth: How Lynn Margulis Rocked the Boat and Started a Scientific Revolution, a film by John Feldman – 2018
Katibeh — Mehdi Akhavan Sales
Martín La Roche Contreras - 12. Extinguish (from the Quickcrossword Ch’aekkôri), 2016, 1 of a series of 24 letterpress posters

This first series is made in collaboration with Manifold Books, Amsterdam. With thanks to AFK.

Artists: “To See the Inability to See” Arefeh Riahi, Maartje Fliervoet and Martín La Roche Contreras
Artists: Willem de Rooij (Issue 1), Jurgen Klauke (Issue 2), Iman Issa (Issue 3)
Archivist: Nell Donkers
Design: Bardhi Haliti
Publisher: Stichting de Appel
Print: Raddraaier SSP

the complete
Series 01