Art in the Library

Our Art Collection

The library features public art that reflects a community of tradition and innovation. We have more than a dozen pieces of art on permanent display, as well as our own gallery on the second floor. Much of the public art was commissioned for the opening of the new library building in 2004. All artwork in the library is funded by generous private donations.

Happy World

Artist Ik-Joong Kang’s “Happy World” mural has become the signature piece of art work for the library.

Consisting of more than 3,700 individual 3-inch by 3-inch tiles, the mural includes objects that were donated by the Princeton community to the artist in advance of the library’s opening in 2004.


Art Installations

Robert Barry of Teaneck, N.J., a highly regarded conceptual artist, has created a project of thought-provoking words etched into a bluestone corner on the building’s exterior.

Katherine Hackl of Lambertville, N.J., created 13 ceramic art panels of varying sizes depicting aspects of local history for the Princeton Room, second floor.

Susan Hockaday of Princeton, N.J., created a wooden cut-out bas relief sculpture called “River Shadows” for the first floor fireplace.

Margaret K. Johnson of Princeton, N.J., was commissioned to create a layered textile wall sculpture of minimalist elegance for the Quiet Room, 1st floor. In addition, the print, “Of Music on a Summer Night,” is on the first floor.

Ik-Joong Kang of New York, N.Y., created “Happy World,” a mixed media wall installation for the lobby featuring 3,700 paintings and carvings by the artist interspersed with artifacts and words contributed by the community.

Lore Kadden Lindenfeld of Princeton,  N.J., a fiber artist and texture artist who studied at Black Mountain College, is represented at the second floor conference room entrance with “Curves and Waves.”

Tom Nussbaum of Montclair, N.J., who makes figurative sculptures that are as thought-provoking as they are whimsical, created four pieces for the children’s area on the third floor.

Faith Ringgold of Englewood, N.J., a renowned artist and writer, is featured on the third floor with a mosaic mural from her award winning book “Tar Beach.”

Naomi Savage  of Princeton, N.J., created “Sphinx-Ozymandias,” using experimental and unique photographic process to create a playful abstraction of a statue located at Morven. The piece is located in the Administration Office.

Carol Schepps of West Windsor, N.J., created two handmade, abstract quilts: one at the second floor fireplace, “Incandescence,” and another, “Yearning Suns,” in the Administration Conference Room on the third floor.

Buzz Spector, a highly respected book and illustration artist from Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., created a unique donor book providing an artistic acknowledgment for the 950 contributors to the library’s capital campaign.

Armando Sosa, a Guatemalan-born weaver who lives in Hopewell, N.J., created a large weaving that is the focal point of for the second floor.

Mary Taylor of Rochester, N.Y., created “Louis the Trumpeter Swan,” a 7-foot sculpture inspired from the book “Trumpet of the Swans” for the third floor.

Legacy Art

Two pieces of public art from the previous library building, which operated at 65 Witherspoon St. from 1966 to 2001, can be seen in the existing library. Beloved by generations of young people in Princeton, “Girl with Bird,” a bronze by Dorothea Greenbaum, can be found outside the third floor Story Room. A bust of Princeton native Paul Robeson by Antonio Salemme graces the Princeton Room on the second floor.

Second Floor Gallery Exhibits

The library present works by area artists in the second floor Reading Room and Technology Center Galleries and chooses artists based on the quality of their work, anticipated appeal to the community, and type of media and its appropriateness for the library gallery space.

Individuals interested in submitting art work for consideration should send digital images to Janie Hermann, Adult Programming Manager, at