22 Jul Tiny Libraries to Punctuate State Street | Local News
Artist Douglas Lochner shows rendering of a question mark library. (Courtesy photo)
Community members and visitors are invited to check out The Tiny Libraries on State project coming to Santa Barbara mid-August through mid-October.
The project is operated by Santa Barbara County Office of Arts and Culture in partnership with the city of Santa Barbara and Santa Barbara Public Library, with additional funding support from Santa Barbara Beautiful, Downtown Santa Barbara, and Santa Barbara Public Library Foundation.
Artist Douglas Lochner, of Ojai, has been commissioned to produce six brightly colored, dynamic and functional public art “libraries” shaped as life-sized punctuation marks on the State Street corridor.
The Santa Barbara Public Library will stock the little libraries with books and contribute corresponding pop-up programming on State Street, including poetry readings, book recommendations, and storytimes.
Books in the tiny libraries will be free to the public to keep or borrow. The community may also leave books in the libraries to donate for other readers.
“These libraries will create the opportunity for people to read for pleasure,” said Santa Barbara Mayor Cathy Murillo. “How wonderful it will be to lose yourself in a novel or pick up a book because the title or subject sparked your curiosity.
“I tell the students I mentor that to be a good writer, you must be a good reader. This project will connect us to information, to stories, to ourselves.”
Additional programmatic partners, including the Santa Barbara Education Foundation, will utilize the project to promote youth literacy. Artist Simon Kiefer will host pop-up interactive typewriter events and the Print Power Collective will hold print demonstrations.
Lochner, whose work has been exhibited along the Central Coast, will receive a stipend of $10,000. He is known locally for his Wings of Honor project, which is slated to debut at the Santa Barbara Airport in 2020.
Lochner’s proposal was chosen through an open submission process juried by representatives from the Santa Barbara Museum of Art; Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara; UCSB; Arts Commission; Santa Barbara Public Library; SBCC; Moxi; City Arts Advisory Committee; and The Book Den.
Artists living or working in Santa Barbara, Ventura or San Luis Obispo counties were eligible to apply for the commission.
The Santa Barbara County Office of Arts and Culture is a division of the county’s Community Services Department, serving as the local governmental umbrella for arts and culture projects and programs within Santa Barbara County. For more, visit www.sbac.ca.gov.
For more about the Santa Barbara Public Library, go to www.sbplibrary.org.
— Sarah York Rubin for Santa Barbara County Office of Arts & Culture.