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Everything old is new again, at least this is the case for the 7th annual Timpview Altered Book Art Competition.

This book competition is where students receive books that have been withdrawn from the Library collection because of age, outdated information or condition. Then, they integrate their art into the book, often using the title as their theme which results in a true collaboration of art and literature. Their entries include an artist statement that explains the thought process that went into their work and its significance. This year the contest collected 43 entries in total.

Brooke Hindmarsh says, “Every story has those little moments, in between the action moments, filled with thought, character development and descriptions. Many say these small moments are unnecessary or aren’t as good as the exciting ones, but for me the “peaches” are just as good, and necessary, as the spices,” Brooke’s piece is titled “Peaches before Spice”.

Oleanne Aanderud says, “I based my altered book on Jeanette Wall’s “The Glass Castle”. I sculpted Jeanette out of paper, which represented how her experiences depicted in the book made her who she is today.” Oleanne’s piece is titled “Born into Wild”.

Eleanor Smith says, “In my piece, I tried to convey a message of hope. Although the poem in the background is pessimistic, the character in the foreground keeps searching for a source of light and hope,” Eleanor’s piece is titled “Looking for Stars”. The poem in the back says, “I can remember lying awake at night in the shadows and looking for the stars. Sixteen years I waited, looking at the dark sky. I found nothing. I wonder if the sky and the sunsets are nothing more than my imagination.”

The judges come from the community which includes professors from BYU and UVU, secondary art teachers and various artists. They write valuable feedback for the students about their entries which makes for a great learning experience.

The contest was started by Pat Gerstner, the school media specialist, when her sister had a similar assignment in her college sculpture class. She found the assignment fun and challenging so she suggested it for the students at Timpview. She then collaborated with Toni Wood, one of the art instructors, to create the contest. Wood had already been assigning her students an art journal project using old books so it was a natural fit. The Timpview Library collection is more than 35 years old so repurposing them is a creative way to recycle the books. Overall, this is a great project that allows students to repurpose items through utilizing their creativity and knowledge of literature.

Melissa Calvillo
  • Melissa Calvillo