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Iowa: Creative Aging in Rural Libraries– Toledo Library offers workshops

April 21, 2019
Special to The Chronicle , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

In Iowa, where three-quarters of the state's 544 public libraries serve communities with fewer than 2,500 residents, there is a new initiative to support creative aging in rural areas. Iowa Arts Learning in Libraries is a collaborative effort of the State Library of Iowa and the Iowa Arts Council (IAC) to offer free arts classes for adults ages 55 and older in rural public libraries. The program began as a pilot in 2018 with a $25,000 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and continues this year with additional IMLS funding as well as $25,000 from IAC. Last year, 19 libraries participated, and 35 are taking part this year. Collectively, these libraries have worked with 23 different artists and arts organizations, who each receive a flat rate to lead four 90- to 120-minute classes. The program is open only to libraries located in counties that have not received IAC support in the previous two fiscal years. The Toledo Library participated the first year and will participate again in May of 2019. IAC and the State Library of Iowa have begun discussing the next phase of the project, which may include training for teaching artists and librarians focused on engaging older adults in creative activities. For more information, contact IAC Arts Learning Manager Jennie Knoebel.

Four workshops will be held at the Toledo Public Library led by professional artists from Grinnell. Each class is guided by the artist through unique processes.

Sewing Instructor Lee Smith

Article Photos

Pictured with the seed library are: seated- BJ reed, Master Gardener intern; right side Cheryl Bruene, Executive Director Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Tama County; left side Sheri McFate, library employee.
Photo Provided

Both of these class projects are hand sewn and rich in history using techniques dating back 100's of years. The two techniques that we will be learning are English Paper Piecing and Japanese Sashiko.

Class 1 - Japanese Sashiko notebook cover. Thursday, May 9th @ 10:30

Sashiko means "little stabs" or "little pierce" and is a form of decorative reinforcement stitching (or functional embroidery) from Japan that started out of practical need during the Edo era (1615-1868).

In this introduction to Sashiko we will be stitching on canvas/denim to make a journal cover. We will provide all supplies but feel free to bring your own sewing kit (if you want) and/or a thimble.

Class 2 - English Paper Pieced pin cushion. Thursday, May 23rd @ 10:30

English paper piecing is the technique of folding fabric over paper templates and hand sewing these together. This is traditionally a quilting technique that traces its first noted origins to the 1770's. It became popular in England during the early 1800s and the earliest known hexagon quilt in the States dates back to 1807. In this class we will use the hexagons to create this adorable little pin cushion.

All supplies provided.

Drawing Instructor Tara Shukla

Session 1 - "A line is a dot that went for a walk ..." Introduction to Drawing.

Tuesday, May 7th at 1:00

This session will look at approaches to drawing from observation emphasizing how we use our eyes differently when drawing. Topics such as drawing games, quick sketches, exploration of line and learning to translate 3 dimensions into 2 dimensions will be covered. Drawing materials will be provided.

Session 2 - From Line to Tone - Shading and Composition in Drawing. Tuesday, May 21st at 10:30

This session will focus on drawing from observation using tone to create an effective illusion of 3 dimensional form. Working from a common still life, topics such as composing a drawing, making a preliminary outline, working on toned (gray) paper and shading will be covered. Drawing materials will be provided.

These workshops are open to the public. In order to help with space and supplies, we request that you sign up in advance for each workshop that you are interested in at the library.



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