Everything Everything exclusive: Chaos to Order at Manchester Central Library

Polly Checkland Harding

Everything Everything have just been confirmed as Manchester Central Library’s artists in residence. You heard it here first.

Everything Everything, for one whole week, in Manchester’s Central Library. That’s got to be some of the biggest and best news to entice our ears in a little while. Because it’s not just the critically acclaimed, double Ivor Novello Award nominated, Manchester-based band who’ll be exploring the new spaces of the library – they’ll also be joined by music agency Brighter Sound, along with artists from a range of other disciplines. Taking the theme of Chaos to Order, the residency is the highlight of the Library Live programme, and plays with the idea that a library, though carefully coded and categorised on the surface, has chaos at its heart – that its shelves contain a riot of knowledge, connections, creativity and flux. “We have long been attracted to chaos,” Everything Everything explain. “Documenting the overload of information in which we live – its overwhelming vastness, its beauties and its dangers – has been central to our work.”

Everything Everything, for one whole week, in Manchester’s Central Library

It’s this organic inventiveness that the band will be unlocking – as part of the grander scope of the Library Live programme – redefining the idea of what a 21st Century library can be in the process. It’s an exciting concept: a library to be experimented with, to be explored as you would your own thoughts. Visitors are very much part of the project, their curiosity and engagement helping to bring Central Library’s resources back into a live – and changing – world. No red ropes and “silence please” signs here: though the details of the residency and ticketed events will be confirmed over the coming months (sign up to the Library Live Newsletter for the latest updates) it seems clear that this is an event that will firmly rethink the strict and restrained rules of libraries past. After all, as Nietzsche once argued, “one must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star.”

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