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Fly Me to the Moon: Celebrating the moon with a display of fiber art in the Science & Business Reading Room beginning October 3, 2017

This post was authored by Nanette Gibbs, Business Reference Librarian, and Sean Bryant, Science Reference Librarian, of the Science, Technology, and Business Division.

Propulsion—The Other Boosters Behind the Moon Landing by Linda Cooper, used with permission. (Fly me to the moon. p. 68, https://www.flymetothemoon.gallery/project/cooper-linda/)

To celebrate the moon, the Science & Business Reading Room will have a display of prints beginning October 3, 2017, highlighting the works of fiber artists featured in the newly published book, Fly me to the moon, an art quilt journey. The book’s title was inspired by author Susanne Miller Jones’ favorite song “Fly me to the moon,” and includes her reflections on the upcoming 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landings with an array of fiber art quilts. The book, which will be included in the display, features narratives by the artists, highlighting their interpretations of the theme and the resultant design choices. Many of these narratives include treasured childhood memories of the space program.

Fly me to the moon, an art quilt journey, by Susanne Miller Jones (cover image Karol Kusmaul) (Atglen, Pa: Schiffer Publishing, 2017)

For our Fly Me to the Moon display, Science, Technology and Business Division staff has examined the Library’s collections for works which reflect the subject matter of the quilts.  Prints and books will be placed in pairs in the exhibit to help illustrate the choices made by the artists in creating their works.

As an example, artist Sarah Entsminger based The Stars and Stripes on the Moon on a well-known photograph of Buzz Aldrin planting the US flag on the Moon during the historic Apollo 11 moonwalk.

The original photograph of Buzz Aldrin as included in Apollo: through the eyes of the astronauts (//lccn.loc.gov/2008049045)

The Stars and Stripes on the Moon by Sarah Entsminger, used with permission. (Fly me to the moon. p. 114, https://www.flymetothemoon.gallery/project/entsminger-sarah-1/)

Entsminger explains the scene, “Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin put the first US flag on the Moon during their historic walk on July 20, 1969.  The image used as inspiration for this piece was from a photo taken by Neil Armstrong of Buzz Aldrin with the flag.  This photo has become one of the most often remembered images from that famous walk on the Moon and one that I remember seeing many times as a child.” (Fly me to the moon. p. 114) The book goes on to describe the choices Entsminger made in creating the work, “Sarah hand and machine appliqued her piece using cotton fabric, Ultrasuede, and felted wool.  She finished the edge with a rattail binding.  She attached a nylon flag, added details with acrylic paint, wax pastels, and colored pencils.  For the visor, she used a moon postcard.” (Fly me to the moon. p. 114) The print of Entsminger’s work will be accompanied by a book from the Library’s collection that includes the image. This will allow viewers to see some of the changes in color, texture and shadow that make Entsminger’s quilt into a unique work of fiber art.

We hope that visitors will make connections between the Library’s collections and appreciate how the artists have used special techniques and everyday fabrics to create some truly out of this world pieces.

The prints and books will be on display throughout the month of October.

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