AT THE LIBRARY: Library’s Pinterest page is an online cabinet of wonders
Since the 16th century, dedicated collectors of curiosities have created Wunderkammer, or “cabinets of wonders,” to display their collections.
These “cabinets” were never simple pieces of furniture, like large china cabinets. They were whole rooms, sometimes whole houses or large public buildings, full of astounding natural objects like narwhal horns, alligator skeletons, ostrich eggs and gems; or exotic curios purported to be mermaid’s hands, dragon’s eggs and phoenix tails.
The Clark County Public Library has its own digital Wunderkammer, its Pinterest page, and you can walk (virtually) right in by visiting www.clarkbooks.org and then clicking on the Pinterest icon in the top right corner of the page, or the icon just to the right of the program banner in the middle of the page.
This cabinet’s curator is reference librarian Jennifer Mattern, who has done an astounding job of assembling 58 very interesting Pinterest boards.
Curator may not be the right word to describe what Jennifer has done. The better term, I think, is artificer, like the legendary Daedalus, who created the Labyrinth at Knossos.
The boards in her Pinterest page create a labyrinth, one will lead you to another until you’re lost for hours.
There’s no Minotaur hiding there. Just delight.
I’m going to point out a few of the boards.
I strongly encourage you to wander through the rest.
You might want to start with Jennifer’s favorite, right now, the newly-created “Quarantine Survival” board. There, you can take virtual tours of museums, national parks, wonders of the world, and — you’ve heard of live-streaming? — in the “Weird and Wonderful Live Stream Cam” board, you can watch live streams. Bring your lunch and relax.
I know many library patrons miss their movie conversations with circulation manager Caleb Diederich. For them, and for lovers of body art, there’s the “Literary Tattoos” board filled with wonderful tattoos of literary characters, book covers and quotes. One look at this board and you’ll be convinced tattoos are art.
A “Book Art” board features examples of pop-up scherenschnitte (paper cutting) that defy belief. Most people find worlds in books. Some paper cutters make worlds stand right up in front of you, so real you feel you can walk in.
Look at the “Love of Books” board to find inspiring quotes about reading. For instance, this one from Kurt Vonnegut: “I am eternally grateful for my knack of finding in great books, some of them very funny books, reason enough to feel honored to be alive, no matter what else might be going on.”
When you think you can’t face another day without the library, look at the “Love Your Library/Librarian” board. There, you will find a Book Riot reprint of a 2014 article from Jessamine County, resident Josh Corman called, “One Man’s Diary of a Month Long Library Closure.”
Corman wrote that article while the Jessamine County Public Library was closed for construction. When you read it, you’ll understand how lucky we are these days to have so much more digital access to movies, books, music and magazines.
Then head on over to Hoopla, check out your favorite music, borrow some books you’ve been wanting to dip into and while away a pleasant hour or two. When you need a break, take a look at one of those stream cams.
Stay healthy at home.
Take care of yourself and your loved ones.
We’ll read through this together.
John Maruskin is director of adult services at the Clark County Public Library. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.