The Reading Room, Revisited

The Reading Room, February 3, 2012

Beginning last January, when it opened, I have been continually visiting The Reading Room, an installation at the Berkeley Art MuseumIn the spirit of the Little Free Library, The Reading Room offers a place to take and leave books, although in this case there is an admission because of its museum setting. Go on the first Thursday of the month, however, and you will get in free. Each visit provides a slightly different experience as the character of the books changes. The original new and glossy small press books overwhelmed it at first, then there were the many books brought in by random visitors, and now there are fewer books overall: mostly the overstock small press books again.

On my last visit, which was September 7, I noticed three handmade objects made of book pages. While they were a bit crudely put together, they also carried a vitality with them that warmed up the room. Someone has been making things intentionally to leave there, which I find inspiring. When I go next I just might bring something, too.

The Reading Room is on exhibit until December 9. Maybe we can all leave some art behind.

A paper box sitting atop a collage

Altered and photocopied book pages taped together

Collaged text and a couple of assembled pages

More elaborate book art objects left behind in Scotland in 2011 are here.


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Sue said…
Alisa, I am a great follower of your work and have purchased some of yur books. This post is very inspiring and then I followed the link to Edinburgh and that blew my head inspirational.
xx Sue
Lizzie said…
That Reading Room is a great idea. I think they should do this in lots of museums and galleries!

And the left-behind pieces of artwork - how lovely. I agree - you should definitely leave a little "thing" when you next visit. Who knows, perhaps it would inspire others to join in - before you know it, there could be a whole shelf-ful of little art pieces, all related to Books!
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