Banned Books Exhibit Launch and Meet the Artists Reception

Post Date:09/18/2017 2:32 PM

Chapel Hill Public Library’s popular Banned Books Trading Cards are back for the fifth year. The public is invited to get a sneak peek at the winning submissions, meet the artists, and celebrate the opening of the exhibit at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 22 in the library’s lobby

More than 100 works from local artists will be on display. All pieces were inspired by books and authors that have been banned or challenged. There will be refreshments, a silent auction of the seven winning pieces of original artwork, and complete sets of this year’s cards. 

About the project:

For the fifth year, Chapel Hill Public Library marks Banned Books Week by celebrating local artists, great literature, and intellectual freedom. The cards were originally conceived by Library Director Susan Brown during her tenure as Marketing Director at Lawrence Public Library (LPL) in Lawrence, KS and were funded the first year with a Judith F. Krug Memorial grant from the Freedom to Read Foundation.  The project garnered national and international attention, as well as a John Cotton Dana award from the American Library Association. LPL continues to produce cards, and when Brown took over the helm of CHPL in 2013, she brought the project with her.

Banned Books Week (Sept. 24–30) is an annual celebration of the freedom to read, sponsored by a number of national organizations and celebrated nationwide. Chapel Hill Public Library uses the national initiative as an opportunity to showcase the talents of local artists as well.  The Library puts out a call for area artists to create works of art that are inspired by a banned or challenged book or author.  A jury selects seven pieces to be printed as trading cards, with facts about the book, the author, and artist on the back of the card.  The project provides art and literature enthusiasts with a unique set of local art plus opportunities to learn about ongoing challenges to their freedom to read.

This year, more than 100 entries were submitted and the winning set features works of etching, quilling, mixed media, and pen and ink inspired by authors including Maurice Sendak, Toni Morrison, and Rita Williams-Garcia.

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