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News / Clark County News

Artist, magazines give author, Vancouver museum a nod

The Columbian
Published: December 27, 2012, 4:00pm

An artist from Turkey spent some time in the Clark County Historical Museum this month, working on a project that will appear in a New York City art gallery in January.

Banu Cennetoglu is a contemporary visual artist who used a camera to gather material for her composition.

Cennetoglu came to Vancouver because of the Brautigan Library, which is housed in the museum at 1511 Main St.

The library is inspired by poet and novelist Richard Brautigan. His book “The Abortion: An Historical Romance 1966” included the idea of a library that accepts anything written by anyone.

John Barber, a member of the faculty at Washington State University Vancouver and a friend of the late author, oversees just that sort of collection.

“‘Abortion’ features a library where anyone can bring in what they want,” Cennetoglu said during a photo session a few days ago.

“I researched it and came across the physical library through John’s website,” she said. “I was fascinated.”

The collection now includes 304 manuscripts, said Barber, co-director of digital technology and culture at WSUV.

Cennetoglu, who is based in Istanbul, photographed several pages of each book, including its title page.

The opening of the show on “Jan. 19 is pretty close,” Cennetoglu said, so she won’t have time to assemble a full-scale work immediately.

“I’m thinking of a poster,” Cennetoglu said.

Whatever the artwork’s initial form, “it will mention the Clark County Historical Museum,” Barber said, “so it will be cool to be in an art museum in New York.”