The Creative Process: Engagement, Production and Installation
Based on the unique and inspiring collections of the University of Michigan Library, each piece was painted during a series of creation sessions by faculty, students, scholars, and southeast Michigan residents.
Librarians Emily Puckett Rodgers and Jamie Lausch Vander Broek hosted two drop-in creation session at the 2019 Ann Arbor Summer Festival, where participants of all ages enjoyed painting pixels. Library Peer Information Consultants Halima Haque and Joseph Powell helped facilitate these sessions, where 150 community members participated in the art creation.
Sitting with a woman and child at the Ann Arbor Summer Fesival, artist Doug Jones discusses the creative process. They are seated at a table that has dotted pieces of paper and paint. These individual pieces of paper are the creation of a section of what will become a larger image.
Library staff enjoyed an opportunity to participate in Connect the Dots creation sessions in the Hatcher Graduate Library, Shapiro Library, and the Art, Architecture & Engineering Library. Library Operations Outreach coordinated an additional session specifically for library student staff as an opportunity to contribute to the final art installations.
The image above features people from CEW+ creating a new piece for the collection. They are seated at a table that has dotted pieces of paper and paint. These individual pieces of paper are the creation of a section of what will become a larger image.
At the creation session, artist Doug Jones worked with members of student organizations, particularly groups that the Library Operations Outreach & Engagement unit has collaborated with on past initiatives. The sessions were offered as a stress reduction “study break” during final exam prep time in Winter 2019.
Summer Program students and other students using the library also participated in Connect the Dots creation sessions in May 2019.
Participants painted the pieces using q-tips and embellished them based on their own creative drive. The creation of these pieces was driven by diversity and cultural exchange all while engaging people of all ages and skill levels in the production of fine art.
Seated at a table with dotted pieces of paper and paint, the community members in this image created the Sanborn Maps at the Detroit Center. These individual pieces of paper are the creation of a section of what will become a larger image.
This technique is fully all-inclusive. It is an excellent community-building project for people of all ages, backgrounds, skill levels, locations, languages, and experience levels.
Production and Installation Phase
Artist Doug Jones assembled and organized the individual sheets of cotton paper painted by community members to assemble the overall image. He then cut and adapted them to form a cohesive image and fastened it to large aluminium sheets.
From this process, he trimmed the sheets into the final size and orientation. Once assembled at his studio in Detroit, the pieces were transported to Hidden Gems Auto Body in Jackson, MI where they were sealed and sanded with high-gloss automotive paint.
The image above features two men from Corrigan Moving wrapping up the “Style” bookmark. They place brown wrapping paper around the completed piece to protect the work from being damaged during transport to Hidden Gems Auto Body.
The pieces are currently located in the Hatcher Gallery Space (6 pieces), Hatcher South Lobby (2 pieces), and Hatcher 8th Floor Suite - Entrance Hallway (2 pieces). Given their construction, they are able to be moved at any time.
Snowy Owl: Engraving by John James Audubon