Next stop for the people of the book? A freewheeling public library to peruse as they wait for a bus. No fines, no rules, no shushing.
Imagine a library where there are no due dates and no librarians telling you to be quiet. Israeli artists have developed a new model for the urban library: a free bus-stop library for commuters and travelers of all ages.
Daniel Shoshan, an installation artist and lecturer at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, along with Technion graduate Amit Matalon, started this new public library concept figuring that people sometimes have long wait times for buses.
Their motto: You may take, you may return, you may add.
The duo built a series of bookshelves at bus stops throughout Israeli cities. The idea is that anyone may take a book from the shelf, read it at the station or take it on the bus and return it when done.
No due dates, no late fees, no rules.
At first they did an experiment to see if the dynamics would work. Would the shelves refill? Would people participate?
“It started as an artistic project, and all of a sudden it was so successful I knew … it fits a new model for a public library,” Shoshan tells ISRAEL21c. “Municipal libraries in Israel have asked me to start it here and I believe it will be a commercial project one day.”
Shoshan believes the bus-stop libraries could be a place to recycle reading material taking up space on people’s shelves and in public library basements.
“I know that people have a lot of books at home and they do not know what to do with them,” he says.
Full story via Israel21c