The Hamden Historic Sketchbook Project Submissions are beginning to come in!
In late April, the Hamden Dept. of Arts and Culture and the Hamden Public Library collaborated on launching a historic sketchbook initiative. Inspired by the original Sketchbook Project in Brooklyn
, the Hamden Historic Sketchbook Project is an art history project meant to encourage Hamden residents to literally "paint a picture" of life during a global pandemic.
Each participant registered through an online request form and received (either by mail or delivery by a Hamden librarian) one 4 inch by 5 inch brown, bound, craft-paper sketchbook with about 24 pages front to back. They also received an illustrated mini Zine with instructions to be as creative as they wished, incorporating any kind of artistic medium or style as long as they did not use glitter (for the sake of keeping nearby books, shelves, flooring and librarians from being covered in glitter).
"I'm more of a crafter than an artist, says resident Clarice Yasuhara
so my little book has a lot of mixed media: stickers, watercolor, markers, collages, acrylic, stamps, doodles, quotes, yarn, etc. It evolved to something more than just a sketch book, it's that plus a scrapbook and a journal and something pretty personal".
When asked why it is important to document Hamden's history, resident Susan Derbacher, says, "Being raised in Hamden from age 2, it is important to have the opportunity to share a resident's experiences".
Kristen Walker said, "LOVE doing this. More pages than I can fill right now but…fun to do".
“Years from now when historians or a person’s grandchild wants to know what it was like to live through this pandemic, there will be this special library collection,” adds Melissa Canham-Clyne, library Director of the Hamden Public Library.
Sketchbooks were donated by a generous, anonymous donor and will be cataloged, digitized and made available to be taken out like real books at the Hamden Miller Library once they have all been submitted.