Brooklyn Art Library/ The Sketchbook Project | Travel Recommendation
Updated: Jun 30, 2020
So we all know that New York is at the top of many people's bucket lists and it's easy to see why; Manhattan is filled with hundreds of museums, theaters and attractions, the city literally never sleeps! I visited for around 5 days back in May of 2018 and it was everything I could have hoped for (the place really is just as magical as it seems in the movies) but as much as I loved the craziness of Manhattan I also really loved exploring the quieter surrounding neighborhoods too.
Brooklyn quickly became one of our favourite places to go to escape the hustle and bustle, and we found quite a few hidden gems there including this place- Brooklyn Art Library! If you love art, reading, or just fancy something a little different then this is the place for you, lemme tell you why:
Stacks of sketchbooks and a peak inside
First thing's first, it's free to visit! Woo! After the amount of money you'll spend throughout your time in NYC, you'll definitely be glad to find something that costs nothing.
They consider themselves to be 'a free museum where you can touch the art' according to their website, and yeah I agree completely! The library is currently home to The Sketchbook Project, where artists from around the world can apply for a blank sketchbook and fill it with whatever they like before sending it back to be housed in Brooklyn, for your viewing pleasure.
The library is a nonprofit organization that's completely funded by artist participation. It's created purely to help inspire creativity and reignite artist's passions across the globe, and I think that's something really pure and beautiful, which is why I want to share it with all of you!
The experience itself is fab, and something so different from anywhere else I've ever been to. You can just browse the random selection of books that are left on the table at the back of the library, or you can have a specific book picked out for you using their selection process. Each sketchbook has an individual barcode assigned to it when it reaches the collection, along with several tags (decided by the artist) about whats inside the book, whether it be where it was made, materials used, style, inspiration etc. You then search through these tags and choose the ones that interest you the most, and the librarians will pick out the books best suited to you!
You can easily spend a few hours in here, curled up on the sofa browsing through as many books as possible. Every single one we opened was so unique, the artist's style really shining through. Some of them were told like story books, some were studies, some where just random collections of thoughts or doodles. Some of them were really artistically inspiring, and some were more simple but completely broke your heart to flick through; it was such a different but really very human experience, I can't explain it! The staff were also really lovely and helpful, and they also have a free photo booth so you can take some photos to remember your trip- Check out my NYC story highlight on Instagram to see the cool photos we took!
A look into the crazy variety of style within the books
I suppose that's all I can tell you about it really, it truly is a fab thing to see. I won't warble on about it too much as it's definitely something to see for yourself, but it really was one of the coolest things we did in New York, and for completely free!
If you do visit Brooklyn in the near future, please please check this place out, you won't regret it. And as always, send photos! Meg x