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Ksenia Inverse

Title ︎︎︎ Behind the Bookshelves 
Ksenia Inverse is an artist specializing in photography. She graduated from the Moscow State University with a degree in Ethnology and received a Master’s degree in Cinema Art from the Russian State University for the Humanities. 

Behind the Bookshelves (2020 — ongoing) Village libraries form a crucial part of the social structure of any village as well as their communal lifestyle. Reading is not the main cause for visiting; each library is a center for education, cultural events, and entertainment. The spaces are used for distributing news, celebrating anniversaries, and social gatherings. Village libraries nourish patriotism in the youth besides preserving national traditions and historical knowledge.

Many of the libraries are managed by just one employee each, most of them being women. They are the ones in charge of decorating the spaces which is why each library possesses a unique interior. Village libraries' book funds rarely receive contributions; some funds have but a few hundred books available.

Mobile data and smartphones have driven the public interest toward digital resources to which village libraries often don’t have access. The librarians compensate for the decline of interest in printed editions and the infrequent donations to the funds by organizing various events within the library spaces, such as celebrations of renowned writers and poets' anniversaries, lectures on local history, open gatherings for children and adults, numerous workshops and quizzes.

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