The Jacksonville Public Library has always promoted art, culture, and civic duty. This election season we combined all three facets into one project, our Voting Matters Exhibit. A visual experience that encourages you to make your voice heard, and get out to vote.
JPL is a safe space that supports and fosters open conversation. This year’s election has been no different. Early voting at participating library branches is one of the many services that JPL participates in. With accessible locations for easy voting all over the city, and no political agenda, we are the perfect choice to support and encourage civic responsibility.
This election season we wanted something that would visually engage and stimulate conversation across the board. The Get Out the Vote poster show, a national show hosted by AIGIA, or American Institute of Graphic Arts, fit the bill. The show happens every four years. It’s meant to galvanize perspective voters to register, and current voters to get out and vote. With some of the best graphic designers nationwide submitting art, it’s no wonder that some of the submissions are pretty powerful. Our local AIGIA chapter contributed to the national submissions, and with the gallery space available in our Jax Makerspace, we welcomed the show with open minds.
We weren’t the only ones in love with the Get out The Vote show. The Jacksonville chapter of AIGIA found common ground with a local non-partisan voter movement, Jax Young Voters Coalition. The intelligent and clever imagery from the show attracts a similar audience to the Jax Young Voters Coalition.
To highlight the history of voting posters the Jax Makerspace paired up with local art advocate, Hope McMath for a presentation on voting entitled, “Posters and Propaganda, The Art of Politics through the Ages.” Hope’s presentation focused on common election time imagery. Think Uncle Sam’s towering “I Want You to Vote” poster, or the harsh realities of propaganda during the rise and reign of Hitler.
The show featured several national submissions, and a wall filled with work from local artists. Participation ranged from local artists and designers like Kingsley Spencer, Mike Barnhart, Argie Mitra, Jason Campioni, Karen Kurycki, and Hope McMath.
Even if you didn’t get out to see the Voting Matters Exhibit, we hope you will at least get out today and cast your vote!