April – June 2006

cARTalog is a community based art project intended to honor the University of Iowa Libraries retired public card catalog and off a rebirth to the long-loved system which would have otherwise been headed for the recycle bin. Project organizers were able to salvage only one fifth of the Libraries’ public card catalog for the cARTalog project; that’s approximately one million cards.

Participants – from Iowa, across the country and around the world – were invited to adopt cards and recreate a home for them in whatever way was most meaningful to them. Cards were requested by a well-rounded demographic: from pre-schoolers to retirees, students and teachers, children and parents, and among these participants emerged artists, writers, librarians, comedians and musicians to name a few.

This exhibition features the over 50 pieces have been submitted for the cARTalog general exhibition. Artists have responded with a range of fascinating works including books, collage, clothing, sculpture and an installation piece by artist Robert Possehl that was suspended from the ceiling of the Main Library’s North Exhibition Hall.

The exhibit was planned and installed by Kristin Baum, Kristi Bontrager, Jessica Alaniz, Laura Thoms, Jessica White and Stephanie Gowler. The cARTalog committee also included Sarah Andrews, Mail Art Project; Donald Baxter, Web Design; Susan Hansen, K-12 Project and Jen Wolfe.