Robert Dawson gallery event: A Photographic Survey of America's Libraries

Thu Jun 5, 2014 - Fri Aug 15, 2014
Multiple locations
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The exhibition is available to view by appointment at Hattery, 414 Brannan Street. Email [email protected] to reserve your appointment.

For many of us, public libraries evoke memories of childhood: the studious stillness, the unending shelves of books upon books, the musty smell of old pages, and the thrill of discovery upon finding a stack of previously undiscovered books. More than just a building full of books, libraries are important community centers, houses of knowledge, or sometimes just places to take shelter.

During the past 18 years, photographer Robert Dawson has travelled the country documenting these beloved and often endangered institutions. His new book - the most comprehensive visual survey of American libraries ever published - reveals the breadth of American libraries. The Public Library: A Photographic Essay spans the grand reading room of New York City's Public Library to the one room library built by former slaves in California, examining a universally important and transformative institution.

The exhibition of photos from the book is available to view by appointment at Hattery, 414 Brannan Street. Email [email protected] to reserve your appointment.

About The Artist

Robert Dawson has long been interested in how photography can be used to understand our relationship with the environment and the commons. He is also interested in photography’s ability to shape public awareness and understanding of the place we call home. Dawson's photographs have been recognized by a Fellowship from the National Endowment For the Arts and a Dorothea Lange-Paul Taylor Prize. He is an instructor of photography at San Jose State University and Stanford University.

From historic Carnegie designs, such as the New York Public Library, to vividly contemporary structures like Rem Koolhaas’s Seattle Public Library, the experience of a dedicated space for information is an important part of what makes public libraries so inviting.

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  1. Hattery
    414 Brannan St, San Francisco, CA
  2. Hattery
    414 Brannan St, San Francisco, CA