Provocations for Future Libraries

The Library Beyond the Book is a publication in the metaLABprojects series authored by Jeffrey T. Schnapp and Matthew Battles that combines investigations into the storied history of libraries with insights into emerging social, cultural, and architectural forms. Within the book’s margins are a series of provocations of varying degrees of practicality and fantasticality as well as windows that offer glimpses at patents and library machines of years past. Taking these provocations and remixing the iconography used in the book, Cristoforo designed a playable card deck consisting of 5 suits instead of 4 and includes 6 jokers.

As a result, the deck offers ample room for game creation in addition to full bandwidth for existing favorites. Moreover, its provocations and imagery lend themselves as conversation catalysts, each shuffle to juxtapose ideas in new combinations.

A digital interactive version of the deck can be previewed at The Library Beyond the Book online.

Decks are currently for sale. Please make relevant inquiries to


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