Graduate student combines passion for art and the library

UNC School of Information and Library Science graduate student Lulu Zilinskas is combining her studies in library science with her artistic talents to make special collections and archived material less intimidating for library guests.

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Over the past year, Lulu Zilinskas has combined her passion for books and art to create a project that she hopes will uncover archival items that remain hidden due to perceived access barriers.

To accomplish this, Zilinskas, a graduate assistant at Wilson Library and a graduate student in the UNC School of Information and Library Science, has created cyanotype prints from the rubbings of book covers in the Wilson Special Collections Library.

She originally planned to create multiple forms of prints to showcase the textures and designs of books that are rarely seen by the public, but when the pandemic forced her to change plans, she adapted her project to making the cyanotype prints.

Ultimately, Zilinskas hopes that her art will help library visitors feel less intimidated by special collections and archives while also enhancing their appreciation of the materials’ beauty.

The project was supported by the University Libraries’ Incubator Awards, which provide students with stipends to undertake research and creative arts projects that draw inspiration from the special collections.

Learn more about the Incubator Awards and future opportunities at the University Libraries website