Modern art beautifies library walls

Published 11:21 pm Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Crosses and crypts in vibrant colors set at odd angles fill the canvas of “Untitled.”

This 1940 painting by Dusti Bonge’ is the first to greet visitors who take a clockwise walk around the exhibit currently on display at Lincoln-Lawrence-Franklin Regional Library.

A Biloxi native, the work of Bonge’ is noted for its vibrant colors and abstract shapes.

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Her painting joins 13 others on loan from the Mississippi Museum of Art in Jackson.

Celeste Carty, a member of the Brookhaven Climbers’ Club and a board member at the public library, contacted MMA and requested that the traveling exhibit be brought to Brookhaven and displayed in the library. The museum’s Affiliate Network sponsors the exhibit and all other stops from the various traveling exhibits offered. According to the museum’s website, the network of almost 30 not-for-profit organizations across the state sponsors the traveling artwork shows “to increase the engagement of the state’s many communities in the visual arts by utilizing the museum’s most significant resource — artworks from the Mississippi Museum of Art’s permanent collection.”

This is not the first art exhibit the library has hosted, and the board plans to host many more in the future. The current exhibit, “Modern Masterworks,” has been in the library throughout the month of April, and will close Saturday.

Recently, an MMA curator spoke with members of the Climbers’ Club and gave them a private “tour” of the works on display.

Carty said she was especially happy to learn about the Mississippi artists included. In addition to Bonge’ (1903-1993), the display includes works from Summit artist Marie Hull (1890-1980) and Andrew Bucci (1922-2014) of Vicksburg.

“Brookhaven is so blessed in that we have people that are interested in all mediums of art,” said Carty. The proliferation of art lovers and artists in the area make it the perfect spot for the Mississippi School of Art, Carty said, and the Haven Little Theatre.

Although libraries are no longer built at the center of town to be the knowledge center for the community, said Carty, they are still a viable part of the community where visitors can always learn and experience something new.

“You should always take a moment to walk through the library,” she said. “You never know what’s on display in that room.”

Other clubs can host exhibits in the library, as well. The display room must be reserved in advance.

The Modern Masterworks exhibit is free to the public and open during the library’s normal operating hours. Library hours  are Wednesday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Thursday 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.