During the fall 2018 term, Detroit artist Doug Jones worked with subject specialists across the University of Michigan Library to identify content to adapt as large-format hyper-real “bookmarks” to be installed throughout library buildings.
Using his PIXEL Technique, Jones reinterpreted the pieces in a hyper-real, large-scale format (mimicking bookmarks) and printed them on individual cotton sheets.
Based on the unique and inspiring collections of the library, each piece was painted during a series of creation sessions by faculty, students, scholars, and southeast Michigan residents. Participants painted the pieces using q-tips and embellished them based on their own creative drive.
Jones and library partners collaborated with library students and staff, student associations, university departments, the Ann Arbor Summer Festival, CEW+, and the Detroit Center to organize and host these sessions. Each piece is finished and mounted on aluminum using automotive manufacturing techniques, a technique Jones uses to incorporate the region’s history with the automotive industry into the fine arts process. The pieces are designed to be mobile and can be moved to new locations over time. The project celebrates the library’s deep and broad collections, the library’s contributions to knowledge creation and sharing, and academic and regional community members. The process served as a community-building experience for people of all ages, backgrounds, skill levels, locations, languages, and experience levels to join together in co-creation.