‘Oceans of Possibilities’ exhibits tiny works of art at Dearborn Heights Library – Press & Guide


The success of a “small” summer art program sparked the introduction of something big this fall at a library in Dearborn Heights.

The “Tiny Art Program” began in July as part of the Heights Summer Jamboree at the John F. Kennedy, Jr. Library (affectionately known as “JFK”).

Over 60 miniature works of art depicting flowers, animals and other subjects were displayed at the Van Born Road branch and on the City Libraries website.

More than 60 miniature works of art were on display this summer at the John F. Kennedy, Jr. Library in Dearborn Heights. The “Tiny Art Program” offered customers small kits complete with paints, brushes and a canvas to express themselves as part of the public libraries’ summer reading program. All artwork is currently displayed on the libraries website. (John Zadikian – For MediaNews Group)

Venus Wilker, a paraprofessional at the library, developed the program with Eileen Coleman, known for her artistic YouTube videos and creative in-house programs. Wilker said she was not just overwhelmed by the response from the resident artists, but by the creativity of their work.

“Oh my god, little kids! These guys surprised me with how artistic they are, and the names of some of the artwork were also very apt,” she said.

A youngster painted a completely gray canvas with what looks like white streaks and named it “Skunk”, and if you look at it, you can see a skunk in it.

In July, participants received a kit containing a small canvas and an easel, brushes and eight small containers of various colors of paint. Three out of four entries were from young people, with flowers being a popular topic, she said.

Those who submitted a painting didn’t have to stick to the “Oceans of Possibilities” theme for this year’s summer programming, so there was a variety of results once the brush met the canvas.

“The diversity, the quality, regardless of age, it was just mind blowing how awesome the customers are,” Wilker added.

The program is scheduled to return to JFK in February so that the works can be displayed during March, National Reading Month. It is possible that it will be added to the Caroline Kennedy Library calendar that month as well.

Meanwhile, as both libraries focus on September Library Card Sign-Up Month activities, the success of the Tiny Art Program has led library staff to plan more exhibitions of local art later this fall once support structures are in place.

For more information on Dearborn Heights Libraries, follow them on social media or their website, dhcl.michlibrary.org.

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