A.C Bilbrew Library

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Client: Los Angeles County Art Commission

Location: Willowbrook, CA, United States

Completion date: 2016

Artwork budget: $65,000

Project Team

Artist

Freyja Bardell

Greenmeme

Art Consultant

Pauline Kanako Kamiyama

Los Angeles County Arts Commission/Civic Art

Overview

“Rise and Shine” is located within an open courtyard at the A.C. Bilbrew Library, in the community of Willowbrook, Los Angeles. Artists conducted a series of studies documenting the building’s architecture and the tiles that are prominently featured on the exterior. The pattern in the tiles became the inspiration for the design of 20 foot high, perforated stainless steel ribbons that provide seating in the courtyard. Planters and a trellis were designed for courtyard to become an outdoor garden and gathering space. The final defining feature is the color gold which was painted around the entirety of the courtyard.

Goals

The artwork provides a sculptural environment where functions of seating, landscape and fresh air work to enhance the daily experience of the library staff and the users. Contrary to the interior spaces, the site allows for higher levels of activity and sound encouraging unique programming opportunities.Recent renovations to the 1970’s library created a direct access to the courtyard though a large glass partition wall, which made the space much more visible from within the library.

Process

Greenmeme held a series of design dialogues where staff expressed their desire to integrate native landscaping into the design of the artwork. In addition, focus groups with the Friends of AC Bilbrew Library and local teens prompted a cross-generational exchange about how the library’s history could be made relevant to new audiences.

Additional Information

Ongoing programming and community engagement were one of the main inspirations for choosing the courtyard as the public art site. To spearhead the programming, artists created a gold book cart, to be programmed by library staff, with the idea that art is everywhere Since its opening, Rise and Shine has hosted multiple art making projects, cooking events, dance and DJ workshop and has a lively program of future events. The Artists continue to work with Library staff and community to envision future program ideas.