The World Will Always Welcome Lovers 

Narrated audio tour of a private residence, 2017.
30 minutes. 

“High above the hordes of stupefied tourists that shuffle through the clouds of cannabis smoke on the Oudezijds Voorburgwal, there is a vast and secret library. It is the home of over seven thousand books reflecting decades of passionate scholarship and collecting by Amsterdam professors Gert Hekma and Mattias Duyves. The library's topics are as broad as they are specific: the Marquis de Sade and his legacy; sexual liberation movements; masturbation, male sex work, and the intersection between sex and crime. There are a few books on werewolves. There is a shelf devoted to child sexuality and intergenerational love. They have first edition copies of the earliest German sexology books. A section on homosexuality in the Muslim world. Every issue of BUTT magazine. Hundreds of biographies of queer historical figures.”

Staged as artistic research during Nemer’s doctoral study at the Edinburgh Collage of Art, The World Will Always Welcome Lovers is a narrated audio tour of the private library of Amsterdam scholars Gert Hekma and Mattias Duyves. The tour leads listeners through the history and contents of the couple’s library, pointing out ideas, objects, and histories that emerge from their collection and home, emphasising touch and feelings of arousal.

The tour was offered to fifty visitors over three days, as part of the Perils and Pleasures symposium, which honoured Hekma’s retirement from the University of Amsterdam in June 2017. Organised in collaboration with curatorial project MILK Amsterdam, visitors accessed Hekma and Duyves's home to experience the audio tour one at a time.

The project was launched with an event at Huis de Pinto, where Nemer discussed his research with activist and sociologist Koenraad Vermey. Nemer also performed a book-wrapping action, writing the titles of books from Hekma and Duyves's collection onto specially designed screen-printed paper.

Books from the Huis de Pinto library were then wrapped with this paper, migrating titles from one library into another.

The World Will Always Welcome Lovers served as preliminary artistic research for I Don’t Know Where Paradise Is, the final audio guide Nemer produced as part of his PhD.

A short text about Nemer's research into the Hekma/Duyves library appeared in Artefact, in C Magazine, 2015. A photo series based on the research appeared in the Queer Networks issue of .dpi Journal. Nemer's research was supported by the Cruising the Seventies research project and the Canada Council for the Arts