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Visitors to Fayette County Courthouse's library can check out more than books

| Saturday, June 22, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
MARILYN FORBES I FOR THE TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Fayette County assistant law librarian Barbara Pasqua is surrounded by the work of several different artists who have been featured in the library over the years.

A law library may seem an unlikely venue for an art show, but Barbara Pasqua, Fayette County Courthouse assistant law librarian, had a vision: The library is now a stage for a new artist every month.

After an attorney brought in some origami in 2008 that Pasqua displayed, she was impressed with the comments and interest shown in the art form, and when searching for ideas to make the library a little special, she decided to expand upon the idea of displaying art to see if she could stir more interest.

“We put an announcement on our bulletin board asking for artwork contributions, and the response was overwhelming,” Pasqua said.

Over the years, the library has been the site of some unusual exhibits, in addition to traditional forms of art, such as painting and sculpting.

The library has displayed printed tissue paper, carved walking sticks and pencils, Pysanki eggs and creches, fused glasswork, purses made from book covers and Christmas ornaments made from jigsaw puzzle pieces.

“We have had some very interesting artwork displayed here,” Pasqua said. “I have been very lucky to get such a variety of different art from different people over the years.”

The artists are not only from the immediate area, but several out-of-state artists' work have found a home in the library for a month of display.

“Some artists have mailed their artwork from other states,” Pasqua said. “We have art from California, Maryland, Rhode Island and West Virginia.”

Artists come in all ages.

“We have artists from early teens to nearly 100 years old,” Pasqua said.

Pasqua recently had an article published in the American Association of Law Library's monthly magazine, Spectrum, telling about her art display and its growing success, and received a certificate of appreciation from the Fayette County Commissioners for her work on the monthly displays and the law library art program.

Some of the art that is displayed is for sale, but because of state restrictions, the purchases must be made by the artist and the buyer and not through the library.

“Some of the artists have really done well selling their pieces here,” Pasqua said. “It all depends on the art.”

Pasqua has said that she is constantly thrilled with the art that is brought to the library and is happy to be able to offer such an interesting and historic location for the artists to showcase their talents.

“There are other law libraries in the country that are much much larger than ours who have bigger art displays, but for our library here in Fayette County, I feel that we are very successful,” Pasqua said.

Marilyn Forbes is a freelance writer.

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