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    As the South Central Regional Library was set to open in Okolona last summer, District 24 Councilwoman Madonna Flood had some discretionary funds for arts. So the architects tweaked the space and dedicated a corner of the open-concept building to an artist-in-residence program that the library calls COLLIDER. Each month, a different artist spends at least 16 hours a week making art and engaging visitors during open studio time, in what’s now a glass-enclosed room. They’ll also curate a list of books and music. So far, more than a dozen artists have participated.

    Alex Serpentini, who personalized the space with decor from her living room, asked people about their day and had other visitors read the responses aloud while she recorded. One day, 60-plus ESL students from Noe Middle School came in and got to try out equipment to make music and beats. “One of the things that blew me away is they would be in there spinning records and someone brought their own records from home,” says branch manager Raechael Robertson. “I saw some of the most diverse groups in there and everyone was just jamming and loving it.”

    “It’s really about community,” says library director Jim Blanton. “Having these spaces where we can learn together and have experiences together is super important, especially one that’s free;
    there’s no barrier to it.”

    This originally appeared in the September 2018 issue of Louisville Magazine on page 102. To subscribe to Louisville Magazineclick here. To find us on newsstands, click here.

    Photo by Sarah Katherine Davis

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    Part of "33 Reasons We Love Our Arts Scene."

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