Visitors will feel like they were in childhood when they were hiding under a blanket with a flashlight for reading their favorite books.
Taiwan's Wuguan Books bookstore was the first experimental space of its kind. Customers are invited to choose and buy books in the dark. Of course, the darkness is not absolute; a dim light illuminates each book, and there are tables with reading lamps in the room; the lights are also not too bright.
The unique bookstore is created by the famous designer and architect Chu Zhi-kan. There are 400 bookshelves in the room, each with one book. The combination of pitch black and dimly lit books creates the illusion that the books "float" in the air, while the rest of the space dissolves and disappears.
There are several rules for visitors, some of them are quite serious, for example, a ban on cell phones. At the same time, others are not too serious - "Don't shout when someone is stepping on your foot. Step on his / her foot in response", "If someone wants the same book (as you), buy a book or get his / her number." And Harry Potter fans will appreciate the rule: "If you think it's too dark inside, take a branch of the tree and shout "Lumos."
However, the concept of the store is far from being just entertaining. Guests are invited to look inside themselves and touch the deeper parts of their soul, to get in touch with emotions and motives that may have been previously hidden. That is why a small but thoughtful selection of books includes publications on various subjects, often sensitive and emotional.
According to Su Yui-shan, the store manager: "The darkened environment helps people choose books that they would not dare buy in other bookstores." It's mostly erotic, but also books about soul, emotions or negative energy".
In addition to books, there is also a section in the store, which sells various souvenirs and unusual goods. It includes home accessories and sex toys and a small bar, where visitors can relax and have a coffee cup.
There is a store at the art center Pier-2 in Kaohsiung, which is Taiwan's second-largest city. Previously it was a warehouse, but then it was converted into an art center, where various art events are regularly held. The bookstore itself is also primarily an art object. Visitors come here to buy a book and get an unforgettable experience and immerse themselves in a world of inner experiences.
Photos: Wuguan Books / Lee Kuo-min.
23 OCTOBER 2020, Taiwan