Tompkins County Public Library

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Visual Culture: An exhibit of art work in all media created by Ithaca High School Students during the 2012-2013 year and curated by Art Faculty

Every year, Carol Spence and the Art Faculty at Ithaca High School present Visual Culture an exhibit of artwork in many different media created by students in the different courses taken during the year.  This year, four projects are on display in the Library.

AP Studio Art requires students to produce a portfolio of 24 pieces of art that reflect issues related to drawing or design. Drawing, painting, printmaking, mixed media, collage and photography are all appropriate media for expression in the development of the portfolio during the yearlong course.  In the “concentration” section, students develop a body of work that is derived from the investigation of an idea or theme that is of personal interest to them.   Aspects of the theme of the “concentration” are evident in these final portraits of the year.

On display are some of the designs and illustrations created by the first IHS Fashion Design & Illustration course this past year. Students explored fashion figure proportions, color theory, media techniques, illustration approaches and style development.  Students are encouraged to think outside the box, with reference to ready-to-wear and haute couture design. Inspirations for these designs include, wearable art, black & white trends and cultural influences.  

In a new project this year, IHS Drawing & Painting students decided to connect with younger students who attend Beverly J. Martin Elementary School, by interviewing the students and painting their portraits.

Digital photographs were used as references and the second graders answered a brief survey to provide more information about who they are and what they enjoy.  When the exhibit comes down, the portraits will be given as gifts to the BJM students by the IHS artists.  

Art faculty hope to expand on this project in the future but this is a start for helping students make connections across grades and between buildings, to share art making ideas and inspire each other in the creative process.

The Drawing & Painting students were introduced to botanical illustration
by illustrator, muralist and gardener, Kellie Cox-Brady. They have painted  botanical images in acrylic on the untraditional surfaces of cabinet doors & window frames and they will eventually be mounted on the
walls of the Artful Garden space. 

Through the new IHS Garden Club and with grant support from IPEI and FABG  IHS students are developing the Artful Garden, a community garden space  to grow produce, art, connection and refuge.  Students are investigating issues around planting and gardening, creating an outdoor art space, planting seasonally and designing a pocket park within the school community. With the Cooperative Extension’s Gardens for Humanity as our community resource, the students are planning, building, planting and decorating this atrium garden space adjacent to the school’s cafeteria.

The exhibit will be on display through July 19, 2-13.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Art in the Heart of the City starts at TCPL

TCPL is delighted to host the work of two artists in this year’s Art in the Heart of the City.

Outside the front of the Library you will Oval Keeper a monumental stone sculpture by Glenn Sweygardt.

Zweygardt is an emeritus Professor of Sculpture at the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University.  Zweygardt possesses an uncanny ability to fuse dissimiliar elements and concepts, naturally occurring and fabricated forms, into structures that command attention. More of his work can be seen at

On the Southwest corner of the building you will find the farmyard murals of Mary Beth Ihnken.  

Ihnken is a highly regarded local muralist who works on many different surfaces in many different locations.  She is the artist of the mural to be found inside the Thaler/Howell Program Room in the Youth Services Department of the Library.  

Check out the work of these artists and then come inside to check out our current exhibits - at the time of posting this blog they are Visual Culture by Ithaca High School Students and a five-year retrospective exhibit from the Ithaca League of Women Roller - and other Library programs.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Ithaca League of Women Rollers present a 5-Year Retrospective

The Ithaca League of Women Rollers celebrates 5 years of hard hits and fast feet with a retrospective in the Avenue of the Friends at the Tompkins County Public Library. On display will be uniforms and flyers through the years, treasured equipment used in actual bouts, and other pieces of roller derby memorabilia.
SufferJets READ at the Library

Enjoy docent-guided tours of the exhibit with members of ILWR, possibly on their roller skates, during July Gallery Night on July 5, as they share memories and facts about the league.

The exhibit has been arranged by TCPL Teen Librarian Regina DeMauro-Axel, also known as Valerie Valkyrie of the SufferJets. TCPL sponsors Regina in all her roller bouts and in return Regina/Valerie Valkyrie promotes the Library and all it has to offer wherever she goes and particularly to teens.

The exhibit will be on display in the exhibit cases in the Avenue of the Friends through July 19.

YMCA exhibit in Avenue of the Friends offers Summer Camp opportunities

During the latter half of June, the YMCA has been presenting information about their Wilderness Summer Camp for children on our public exhibit table.  You still have time to see this display before it is taken down and followed by a display by Tompkins Learning Partners.

Y-Wilderness camp offers children positive developmental experiences and encourages them to forge bonds with each other. Children experience a sense of achievement through opportunities in the outdoors. Y-Wilderness campers are able to explore creativity, experience teamwork and practice leadership in a wide range of primitive activities that influence lifelong healthy living. They have the opportunity to enjoy an outdoor environment where they develop an appreciation of nature. The Y believes that when kids stretch their legs, explore new fields, and connect with the world around them, they grow into healthy, inspired, and confident adventurers who are fortified with a richer sense of their environment and a set of values that are based on an appreciation for the beauty of the natural outdoors.

For more information about the Y and all they offer our children for “youth development, for healthy living, and for social responsibility” go to