Practice the Art of Magazine Browsing at This Taipei LibraryBy Stephanie Zsu
Boven Magazine Library. Of all the things to do in Taipei, you probably didn’t consider magazine browsing. (Photos: Sean Marc Lee/ VSCO)
Located just off Fuxing South Road, lane 107 is as secluded as they come in Taipei. But with the recent opening of two popular bars, the alley’s residents – many of who have been here for decades – are fighting a much-publicized battle against what they see as an invasion of rowdy young Taiwanese. But surely even they would find it hard to protest against the alley’s newest arrival: welcome to Boven, a so-called magazine library containing over 14,000 volumes of print material.
Here, for a one-time fee, culture vultures can gorge on back issues of “Monocle” and “The Gentlewoman” or flick through avant-garde Japanese publications, or even have a cheeky glance at Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari’s TOILETPAPER magazine. Inside the library, there is an all-pervasive silence, interrupted by the occasional flip of a page or the click of an art student’s camera shutter.
Linen-clad workers potter around the space, lugging canvas baskets overflowing with magazines to shelf. Magazines, unlike novels, seem to lend themselves to the act of casual, leisurely browsing. And there’s no place better to do it than in Boven.
Where to Find Boven Magazine Library
Marriott Hotels explored Boven Magazine Library as part of a collaboration with VSCO’s photographers to create city guides for Paris; Berlin; Cairo; Taipei; and Portland, Ore. Check out: A Full Guide on How to Travel Brilliantly in Taipei.