Solange’s Saint Heron Unveils Free Library of Rare Books and Art by Black Creators

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Solange’s Saint Heron studio and platform has announced the launch of its free library of “esteemed and valuable” books by Black creators for research, study and exploration. Each reader will be invited to borrow a book of their choice for 45 days, completely free of charge. It is available via Saint Heron’s website, saintheron.com starting Monday, Oct. 18 — further details on taking out the books is below.

According to the announcement, the library is part of Saint Heron’s larger goal to “build upon its urgent mission to preserve, collect and uplift the stories, works and archives that amplify vital voices within our communities.”

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The first season of the Saint Heron Library runs from 18 October until the end of November and is guest-curated by Rosa Duffy, founder of the Atlanta-based Community Bookstore and reading room ‘For Keeps Books’. Together Saint Heron and Rosa Duffy have curated a digital and physical library that will be home to over 50 titles, including a signed 1st edition of “In Our Terribleness” by Leroi Jones, “Maren Hassinger, 1972-1991,” a signed “The Meeting Point” by Austin Clarke, “Lumumba” by Luis Lopez, “My One Good Nerve Rhythms, Rhymes, Reasons” by Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis inscribed by authors to Maya Angelou and more. The first season of the Saint Heron Library is supported by global skincare brand Aesop.

Solange said, “The Saint Heron Library continues the work we have been building by preserving collections of creators with the urgency they deserve. Together we seek to create an archive of stories and works we deem valuable. These works expand imaginations, and it is vital to us to make them accessible to students, and our communities for research and engagement, so that the works are integrated into our collective story and belong and grow with us. I look forward to the Saint Heron library continuously growing and evolving and over the next decade becoming a sacred space for literature and expressions for years to come.”

Aesop Chief Marketing Officer Adam Kakembo added, “Aesop has a long-standing commitment to literature and the written word. As much as literature is an inspiration to us, it also is, now more than ever, a responsibility. By turning select Aesop stores into free Queer Libraries during Pride earlier this year, Aesop aimed to amplify voices of LGBTQIA+ authors, primarily Black and Brown, and reflect on the stories we chose to uplift within our spaces and our community. We hold in high esteem the work of the Saint Heron collective in the urgent preservation of important stories, and when they shared their own Library project it was evident to us we needed to support.”

HOW THE SAINT HERON LIBRARY WORKS

  1. Season One of the Saint Heron Library will launch and live on comand will be open to US based residents only.

  2. The library is free of charge and is based on a borrowing honor system via online registration.

  3. All 50 book titles will be announced October 18th and will be available viacomat 12pm ET/9am PT. All borrowers are granted to reserve one book per person. Requests are fulfilled on a first come, first served basis.

  4. Books will be shipped via Worldnet and will include shipping and return postage costs to ensure the library is free to readers.

  5. All borrowed books are due for return to the Saint Heron Library 45 days after the check-out date- on saintheron.com

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