A Sketchbook Library for Birmingham?
Sketchbooks are amazing things. They can take many forms and serve many purposes. They can be deeply personal visual journals, a space to experiment and plan other artworks, a rough book or note book full of scribbles and doodles, or a place for art students to present their work. They can be artworks in their own right: sometimes there is a fine line between a sketchbook and what might be called an 'artist's book' or 'bookwork'.
As art educators, sketchbooks are a part of our everyday life and work. We've also spent a year working with and in Stirchley Library, delivering workshops covering a range of book making techniques. I think it's safe to say we're big fans of sketchbooks, artists books, and anything related!
Part of our longer term ambition is to be a permanently established community art space at Stirchley Library (we're working on it). However, we're also exploring the possibility of establishing a library within the library full of sketchbooks that people can come and view, handle, and learn from or get inspired by.
We are thinking that this Sketchbook Library will be accessible to anyone in Birmingham who wishes to come and look at it - and we are hoping that it might contain books donated by artists, designers, architects, cartoonists, graffiti artists, ceramicists, game designers, craftspeople, jewellery makers, doodlers, illustrators, collage artists and so on - be they professionals or amateurs, adults or children. The library could also include books made collaboratively, for example by participants in our Sketchbook Circle.
What a wonderful resource it could be!
So, this is our vision.
We are currently exploring possibilities for funding that would support the administration, storage and community learning opportunities involved in the project.
Do you have a sketchbook you would like to donate?
Or any thoughts / ideas you'd like to share?
Please do get in touch!
You can email us on firstname.lastname@example.org.