Farmers Branch Library Mural Features 7,000 Books, Emphasizes Recycling – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth


A one-of-a-kind artwork at the Farmers Branch Manske Library includes a three-story mural painted on books.

According to City of Farmers Branch officials, the city hired California-based artist Mike Stilkey to paint one of its whimsical murals inside the Manske Library.

Stilkey got his start in Texas when he painted his first mural with around 5,000 pounds at Rice University in Houston in 2007.

The mural in Houston has gone viral, and now Stilkey has created murals of painted books all over the world.

Stilkey said he uses books thrown in dumpsters and other places for his projects.

“Books die,” Stilkey told the Los Angeles Times. “So many go in the trash. It’s crazy. If I can paint on them, I’ll give them a second chance.”

Library officials said they spent months collecting 10,000 books for the project, and work to create the mural is already underway.

The Stilkey mural, which includes 7,000 books, is part of a movement to reinvent the public library as an urban hub of art, technology and interactive learning, library officials said.

“I think everyone relates to a book whether you’re 5 or 90,” Stilkey said. “You know, everyone has a strong connection to the book, so I think it really lends itself to public spaces.”

The Farmers Branch Manske Library will also install a beehive with 5,000 bees behind a plexiglass wall as well as a makerspace with 3D printers.


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