Local Libraries Compete in Culture Pass Book Display Contest

Public votes through March 26!

Greenpoint Library’s entry for the Culture Pass contest features a full-size papier-mâché sewing artist making a quilt that features many places Culture Pass can take you. The books featured are by or on Greenpoint, Brooklyn, or NYC artists. Photo credit: Lori Ann Doyon

On March 7, almost a hundred public library branches around NYC unveiled their creative vision in display form working off the theme “The Creative City”.  The public gets to narrow down the contestants by voting for their top five choices in each library system: Brooklyn Public Library, New York Public Library, and Queens Public Library.  The vote is open online here: https://www.culturepass.nyc/book-display-contest/bpl  until March 26 at 5 p.m.

In North Brooklyn we have two contenders: the Greenpoint Library and the Williamsburgh Library. Because we are unbiased, GREENLINE encourages you to vote for both of them and show your love for our local libraries!

Greenpoint Library’s display features an artist sewing a quilt while sitting in front of a window that features the city’s skyline.  The artist is a full-size papier-mâché sewist created by Greenpoint Library’s staff using old issues of “our local paper that keeps our community connected, GREENLINE,” the library stated in a post on their Facebook page.  This paper is humbled but mostly honored by this inclusion.

Photo credit: Lori Ann Doyon

The concept for their display is based around communal creativity, highlighting the neighborhood, and this library’s focus on environmentalism.  The Greenpoint Library has held several upcycling art classes, and they have a sewing circle, a mending program, and a knitting club. They also lend out sewing machines.  Their dedication to the fabric arts guided their choice of creating a quilt made from recycled fabric and materials provided by locals, staff, and Materials for the Arts.  Each patch of the quilt represents a Culture Pass organization.  The border patches were created by local kids who were asked what a creative city means to them.  They answer with pompoms, polka dots, glitter, feathers, beads, and paint.

Books are another component of the display. Greenpoint Library’s choices featured books by or on Greenpoint, Brooklyn, or NYC artists, and the books are in a range of reading levels.

Williamsburgh Library’s entry for the Culture Pass contest also inspired community to contribute their creativity. Photo credit: Williamsburgh Library Facebook

Williamsburgh Library also inspired the local community to contribute to their entry in the Culture Pass contest.  Their display encourages its visitors to: Inspire, Create, Shine! They exhibit recreated famous artworks, such as Vincent van Gogh’s “The Starry Night” to promote the places Culture Pass can take you.   “The Starry Night” is on view at the Museum of Modern Art, MoMA.  Next to each creative piece is museum label that informs of the artwork’s inspiration, its title, and the artists who created it.  For instance, there are two streamers of prayer flags with messages like: “Be Kind”, “Peace”, “Give Hugs”, and “Swim Free”; its museum label credited the Rubin Museum and the Museum of Natural History as the inspiration.

The winning libraries from the first round will then go to a jury of artists, creatives, and cultural leaders who will select a first-place winner and first runner-up from each of the three library systems.  Then they will pick one of the three first-place winners and award the best book display citywide. The final winners will receive cash prizes to use as they see fit at their branch.

The judging panel includes Pat Kiernan, morning anchor, Spectrum News NY1; N.K. Jemisin, New York Times bestselling and Hugo Award-winning author, and a recipient of a 2020 MacArthur Fellowship; Katie Yamasaki, muralist and children’s book artist; Dylan Thuras, co-founder, Atlas Obscura; and Martha King, senior program officer, The Charles H. Revson Foundation.

Deadline to vote is March 26 at 5 p.m.  You can pick five libraries in each of the three systems. Vote here: here: https://www.culturepass.nyc/book-display-contest/bpl   

Author: Lori Ann Doyon

Managing editor, head writer, and lead photographer of Greenline | North Brooklyn News since October 2014. Resident of Williamsburg, Brooklyn since 1990.

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