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Book Mark'd

This community-initiated public art project for the Mattapan Branch of the Boston Public Library began before the creation of the City's Percent for Art program. 

This project is in the fabrication phase.

Project Details

Project Context

In 2008, the Mattapan Library Art Committee, with support from the Browne Fund, commissioned artist Stuart Schechter to create a proposal for an exterior sculpture to complement the construction of the new building. After several design iterations, Schechter proposed Book Mark’d to the Boston Art Commission (BAC) in May 2019. 

The BAC voted to conditionally approve the preliminary design of the artwork. The BAC asked the artist to address several design concerns before final approval. The commission then approved the final design in April 2020. The artwork is scheduled to be installed by spring 2024.

The artist and the Friends of the Mattapan Branch selected a fabricator for the project. They worked closely with him for the past two years to complete the design of the artwork. The City allocated $250,000 as part of the FY22 capital budget to support the completion of the project.

about the artwork

Book Mark’d will be a cast bronze sculpture approximately 12 feet tall. The sculpture will incorporate a spiral stack of 21 books in a variety of sizes and thicknesses. The artwork will embody Mattapan’s unique personality and history with shallow-relief imagery on the book spines. The bottom 20 books will have a patina reminiscent of antique leather book covers. The top book will have a shiny, bare bronze patina, giving the peak a beacon-like glow.

Book mark'd rendering
Rendering of Book Mark'd, courtesy of the artist.
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