ORGANIZATION, ACCESS, AND USE: Hamtramck Free School, Art Resources Transfer, and Soberscove Press in conversation

  • 1480 Gratiot Avenue Detroit, MI, 48207 United States

About: What do we mean by public access? Does availability equal access? What are the uses of literacy, and the consequences of sharing knowledge and information? What are the pleasures and potential dangers of browsing?

Art Resources Transfer is pleased to join Hamtramck Free School members Jonathan Rajewski, Justine Tobiasz, and Soberscove Press’s Julia Klein in a conversation surrounding the organization, access, and use of public library collections; as well as the potentials, limitations, and possible forms of public libraries themselves.

The Hamtramck Free School is a non-hierarchical educational project formed in 2013 as a space for peer-led, experiential and emancipatory learning. In 2014, HFS initiated a Research Library to introduce a special collection of difficult-to-access educational resources to Hamtramck and neighboring communities. The library includes a collection of books donated by Art Resources Transfer, a New York-based non-profit organization that creates more egalitarian access to the arts and literacy through innovative publishing (A.R.T. Press) and the free distribution of contemporary art books to underserved public schools and libraries (D.U.C.). The D.U.C. places a yearly average of 27,000 free books donated by 60 publishers in over 600 public schools and libraries throughout the country, bridging communities of artists, publishers, readers, and students by providing resources that underserved public institutions could not otherwise afford to acquire. One of the D.U.C.’s longstanding and generous donors, Chicago-based Soberscove Press publishes and distributes previously inaccessible art-related materials, exploring modes and functions of documentation to connect historical themes and issues to the present.