Written by Carolyn Fairbanks. Digital Media by Jessica Sturgeon.
Book and art lovers can rejoice because the 3rd Annual Book Art Contest is once again bringing the two together. The contest encourages participants to “play, think, create, innovate, repurpose, and sculpt” discarded books, librarian Georgann Kurtz-Shaw explains.
The library began the contest began for three major reasons according to Kurtz-Shaw. The first reason was simple. “We thought the contest would be fun,” she says. The library wanted host an event each semester that brings people into the library to show them it’s more than “a storehouse for books and computer.” The next reason for the start was actually the inspiration from Professor Steve Heilmer’s class Juxtaposynthesis. “In this class Prof Heilmer asks students to transform something commonplace into something new and beautiful—into a work of art,” Kurtz-Shaw tells. The library displayed the class’s work for several years in the library for a larger audience, which ended up sparking the Book Art Contest for the library. The extensive book-weeding project the library started a few years ago also contributed to the contest. “It seemed a shame to send boxes of books that no one wanted off to a recycling center,” Kurtz-Shaw revealed, “the book art contest gives some of the library’s withdrawn books another life.” There have been some changes this year in the contest. Instead of the participants being just college students,
they have opened up the contest to two divisions: Junior and Senior High and College and Beyond. Individuals and groups up to four are allowed to enter the contest. “We’ve received a lot of positive feedback about the book art projects the past two years” explains Kurtz-Shaw. The library wanted to give a younger audience and older audience a chance to participate. “We’re hoping we’ll have to bring some tables out of storage in order to have enough room to display all the book art in this year’s contest,” she says.
The deadline for pieces to be installed is March 26th. Participants have from 8:00am to 9:30pm that day to install their pieces. The art piece cannot be larger than 3 cubic feet and has to be 75% book or magazine material. For more guidelines on the project go here Book Art Contest Guidelines. Judges will be three faculty members from our Art and Digital Media departments, but students also have a chance to vote for the People’s Choice Award. The voting for this begins March 27 and ends April 3 at noon. Voting takes place in the library or on the library’s Facebook page. Awards will be presented on April 3 from 3:30pm to 4pm at the library. Awards prizes include gift cards to Amazon, Jo’s Java, and iTunes. For more information on the contest email the library at firstname.lastname@example.org.