co-director in Stankievech 2016

Quebec Regarding

Charles Stankievech
19 January 2016

To the Superior Court of Quebec:
I am writing in support of the online community and library platform called “” (also known under additional aliases and
urls including “,” “,” and most recently
“”). It is my understanding that a copyright infringement lawsuit has been leveled against two individuals who
support this community logistically. This letter will address what
I believe to be the value of to a variety of communities
and individuals; it is written to encompass my perspective on the
issue from three distinct positions: (1) As Director of the Visual
Studies Program, Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design,
University of Toronto, where I am a professor and oversee three
degree streams for both graduate and undergraduate students;
(2) As the co-director of an independent publishing house based
in Berlin, Germany, and Toronto, Canada, which works with international institutions around the world; (3) As a scholar and writer
who has published in a variety of well-regarded international
journals and presses. While I outline my perspective in relation to
these professional positions below, please note that I would also
be willing to testify via video-conference to further articulate
my assessment of’s contribution to a diverse international
community of artists, scholars, and independent researchers.

Essay continuing from page 49

“Warburgian tradition.”47 If we consider the Warburg Library
in its simultaneous role as a contained space and the reflection
of an idiosyncratic mental energy, General Stumm’s aforementioned feeling of “entering an enormous brain” seems an
especially concise description. Indeed, for Saxl th

ombinations of the original published text and annotations or notes from the reader. Commentary is a practice that
has been occurring for centuries; in Medieval times, the technique
of adding commentary directly onto a published page for future
readers to read alongside the original writing was called “Glossing.”
Much of the philosophy, theology, and even scientific theories
were originally produced in the margins of other texts. For example, in her translation and publication of Charles Babbage’s lecture
on the theory of the first computer, Ada Lovelace had more notes
than the original lecture. Even though the text was subsequently
published as Babbage’s work, today modern scholarship acknowledges Lovelace as important voice in the theorization of the
modern computer due to these vital marginal notes.
2. supports small presses.
Since 2011, I have been the co-founder and co-director of
K. Verlag, an independent press based in Berlin, Germany, and
Toronto, Canada. The press publishes academic books on art
and culture, as well as specialty books on art exhibitions. While
I am aware of the difficulties faced by small presses in terms of
profitability, especially given fears that the sharing of books online
could further hurt book sales; however, my experience has been
in the opposite direction. At K. Verlag, we actually upload our new
publications directly to because we know the platform
reaches an important community of readers and thinkers. Fully
conscious of the uniqueness of printed books and their importance, digital circulation of ebooks and scanned physical books
present a range of different possibilities in reaching our audiences
in a variety of ways. Some members of may be too

comparison does not need to claim artistic qualities
for Warbur

which are both
vital elements for research within a democratic society and
the foundations of any library system. As a result of this freedom,
there are sometimes violations of copyright. However, since is a committed, non-profit community-library, such transgressions occur within a spirit of sharing and fair use that characterize this intellectual community. This sharing is quite different
from the popular platform, which is searchable
by non-users and acquires value by monetizing its articles through
the sale of digital advertising space and a nontransparent investment exit strategy. is the antithesis of such a model
and instead fosters a community of learning through its platform.
Please do not hesitate to contact me for further information,
or to testify as a witness.
Charles Stankievech,
Director of Visual Studies Program, University of Toronto
Co-Director of K. Verlag, Berlin & Toronto

… Medieval works, as diverse as the tapestry, the glass window,
the miniature, the fresco, and the sculpture become united as
one family if reproduced together on one page.”60 In his search
for a common visual rhetoric, Malraux went further than
merely arranging creations from one epoch and cultural sphere
by attempting to collect and directly juxtapose artworks and
artifacts from very diverse and distant cultural, historical, and
geographic contexts.
His richly illustrated series of books thus functions as a
utopian archive of new temporalities of art liberated from
history and scale by de-contextualizing and re-situating the
works, or rather their reproduced images, in unorthodox combinations. Le Musée imaginaire was thus an experimental virtual
museum intended to both form a repository of knowledge and
provide a space of association and connection


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