Visitors to the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library can travel the world from the comfort of the Alice C. Sabatini Gallery during its 10th Annual Exhibit for Children featuring photographs by Jim Richardson.
The exhibit will open at the First Friday Artwalk on June 3 and will run until August 12. Richardson is a freelance photographer and native Kansan who works for National Geographic Magazine.
Richardson has 57 prints hanging in the gallery, which have been grouped in threes. Each group connects cross-cultural themes. From parties to geography, the photo groupings capture the essence of the people and places they depict. The exhibit shows that all cultures have similarities, no matter where in the world they are.
“The themes of life are based around basic activities of eating, sleeping and play,” Richardson said. “But there’s a lot of variation inside of each of those themes. The world is a big place. I wanted to group them so that younger viewers could see connections across time and space.”
The entrance of the gallery will display the library’s private collection of shoes. There are no Gucci or Prada designs here, but visitors will see shoes made of wood and shoes meant for women who have had their feet bound. The various shoes are also from different time periods and cultures and mirror the themes of Richardson’s work.
The exhibit will be featured as part of the First Friday Artwalk on July 1. Also, Richardson will be here to show more photos from his journeys around the world and discuss his photography and the cultures he has visited at his Artist’s Talk at 3pm July 2.
Kids, and kids at heart, can tell their own travel stories through drawing activities inside the gallery.
The shoes and Richardson’s photographs are all part of the library’s Summerfest theme, “One World, Many Stories,” which focuses on travel and reading. Anyone can sign up for the program at summerfest.tscpl.org and earn prizes for reading.
The Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library is a 21st-century, landmark library, and features the Alice C. Sabatini Art Gallery, the Millennium Café, Chandler Booktique, meeting rooms, and free computer and Internet access and training.
Library hours are Mon. through Fri. 9 am to 9 pm, Sat. 9 am to 6 pm and Sunday 12 pm to 9 pm.