The Livre Exchange is a free library designed by Didier Muller of the French design collective House Work that lets passers-by exchange books for free. The project was unveiled at the International Design Biennial 2013 in Saint-Étienne as a collection of transparent boxes suspended from trees. Visitors were able to take a book from one of the boxes and replace it with one of their own.
Combined with street furniture designed by Nathalie Faessel, the installation promotes free access to reading. Although the concept of free urban libraries is already practiced in cities across the world, the “Livre Echange” library introduces boxes as shelters for books that are left outside and exposed to the elements. By populating public parks with these mini libraries, city residents can grab a book while strolling and drop it off in a different box, protecting it from weather damage.