The Iowa City Public Library has a remarkable collection of original art. Each fall the library holds the Art Purchase Prize contest and adds from six to ten original works to its circulating collection. The winning pieces are displayed during the months of January and February on the second floor of the library. I walk by that wall many times during the day and one piece in particular caught my attention this year – Perro Ovejero by Oscar Urizar. This black and white photograph captures a working dog and a flock of sheep. There is also a shepherd, though I didn’t notice him at first. It was the dog that grabbed my attention, then the sheep and the sky and finally the man.
Items in the Art Purchase Prize collection as well as the Art-to-Go collection of framed posters check out for two months at a time and each borrower can have two items. A number of libraries circulate framed art but very few loan original art. We are fortunate to live in Iowa City where so many talented artists reside. If you have not borrowed a piece or two from this marvelous special collection take some time to see what we have. Take a gallery walk through the collection on the walls near the fiction collection on the first floor I guarantee that you will find more than two works you will want to hang at home or at work.