‘Minoru Manifesto’ hangs in Richmond library

“It’s the community voice.”

Julie Hammond, Richmond’s artist-in-residence, created a text-based art piece with words contributed by Richmond residents.

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Earlier this year, Hammond brought the Richmond community together to participate in a year-long project. She asked residents write down words that described what was important to them personally, and what they felt defined the city.

These words were organized into two columns — “self” and “city” — and then transcribed by calligrapher Marin Riesle, turning it into a 10-meter scroll-like artwork, called the “Minoru Manifesto,” which now hangs at the Richmond Public Library.

"It is a practical document, but it became a heightened document with the community voice," said Hammond.

"It was a wonderful experience to see people recognizing their own quirks and recognizing what they included and not included in (the Manifesto)."

Biliana Velkova, Richmond's public art planner, told the News three artists are commissioned for the year-long project by the city each year.

The "Minoru Manifesto" is one of three projects that was part in Richmond's engaging artist in the community program.

"The artists must have socially oriented practices, which (means) they work in the community for different goals or different types of research they want to explore in the city," said Velkova, adding that the Manifesto came out of a series of workshops held by Hammond.

Because the piece of art is text-based, it resonated with the library, making it a good place to be installed.

"The idea and goal of engaging the community is to reach out to as many different communities as possible, (...) and the Richmond Public Library has the great intersection of communities coming in every day to experience culture and of course the scroll is part of it,” said Velkova.

"It's really great to see this kind of big (collection) of answers that really reflect our Richmond community."

The piece of art will be on display until April 2020.

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