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Books as art

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Posted: Monday, September 21, 2009 12:00 pm | Updated: 8:13 am, Thu Aug 16, 2012.

By Mason W. Canales

Killeen Daily Herald

HARKER HEIGHTS – Colored and seared pages, cut covers and drilled spines are typically things people wish not to see at a library, but the exhibit running at the city's library shows it can be art.

"The book as an object of art has been around a long time," said Wynona Alexander, Central Texas College Fine Arts Department chair. "I think there are some people that are horrified about the books being messed up, but then they think about all the books that go out into the landfill, and this is a much better use for them."

Alexander and several other local artists have displayed their works of altered books at the Harker Heights Library, 400 Indian Trail, for a viewing which started Saturday and runs until Oct. 23.

There are three different types of book art forms being displayed at the library during the exhibit, Alexander said.

There are hand-crafted books, which are made in various traditional forms, but the artists have added their own unique style, Alexander said. Some artists took an existing book and chose to manipulate it, and other artists chose to make an interpretation of books.

"This is a great way to showcase some of the artwork that is being done in our area and being done at CTC," said Library Director Lisa Youngblood. "I think that is going to be interesting to the individuals that walk in because it is eye catching, and it is going to be about books. It might spark some interest in individuals to picking up their own hobby."

CTC and the Harker Heights library staff both worked on bringing the exhibit to its display cases, Youngblood said.

The exhibit allows the local artists to reach out to the community in a new way, and it exposes a different type of art form to those in the community who may not know about altered books, Alexander said.

"The local artists are able to reach their peers in the community and for those in the community it may demonstrate a new art form," Alexander said. The more times we do something like this in an art exhibit space, the better."

Contact Mason W. Canales at mcanales@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7554.

If you go

Altered Books Display Exhibit

Sponsored by Harker Heights Library and Central Texas College

Now through Oct. 23.

Harker Heights Library, 400 Indian Trail

List of artists and works on display

The artists are Marilyn Seals whose works are both altered and handmade books; Helen Kwiatkowski, Sarah Moore and Amanda Garcia use primarily the hand-made format; Barbara Sorge who makes books which are both altered in format and hand-made versions of the book form; Wynona Alexander who is displaying a variety of ways to alter a book; and Nancy Isett using interpretation of the book form into ceramic objects of contemplation.

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