Since the Library as Incubator Project began last year, our home base has been Madison, Wisconsin. We’ve held editorial meetings in a number of libraries, coffee shops, and Terrace chairs. And while Laura and Erinn are still holding down the fort in Madison, I have now moved north to lovely Eau Claire, Wisconsin. While this hasn’t changed much about how the Library as Incubator Project functions (thank you, Skype!), it does open up a whole new region of libraries to explore in person, artists to discover and meet, and new coffee shops from which to tweet at the rest of the world.
Of course, being a librarian, one of the first things I did after moving in was explore the L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library in Eau Claire and get my library card. Being a Library as Incubator Project project manager, one of the first things I did in the library was look for art. I wasn’t disappointed.
The second floor of the library features a large gallery space, complete with several glass display cases for 3D items, a wall hanging system, and a formal information table with handouts about the exhibit and a guest book. The impressive space is currently occupied by an exhibit titled, The Art of Volume One: Ten Years Covering the Chippewa Valley. Volume One is a local culture and entertainment magazine, and every single one of its covers over the last ten years has featured art that is somehow connected to the community. The library has teamed up with the publication to show some of the original artwork behind those covers, which seems a wonderful way to partner with a local publication and a huge variety of artists.
I’m very excited to continue to explore the L.E. Phillips Memorial Library, other libraries in the Eau Claire area, and all of the vibrant arts culture just west down I-94 in the Twin Cities. If you’re a librarian in the area, feel free to get in touch — I’d love to meet you! Of course, the focus of the Library as Incubator Project is not limited to our physical location, but extends to ANY library in ANY place. No matter where you are, if you’d like to share your library as incubator ideas, please contact us!
Speaking of our physical locations, Erinn is currently in California at the ALA Annual Conference! She’ll be in Anaheim all day today and is tweeting at @ErinnBatykefer. Although Erinn won’t be at the booth today, some information about the Library as Incubator Project is located at booth 2719. Leave your business card with us and you could win a fabulous Library as Incubator Project t-shirt! Feel free to reach Erinn on Twitter — she can’t wait to finally meet some of our readers in person!