Literature, Multiculture & Makerspaces in Branch Libraries

On this trip we will visit three branch libraries on the outskirts of Aarhus.

Friday 11 September 13.00-17.00 Open
Monday 14 September 13.00-17.00 CLOSED - FULLY BOOKED
Fee: DKK 250 (EUR 35) including bus, coffee/tea, water & snacks
Meeting point: Dokk1 Information Desk at 13.00  
Participants min. 25 max. 40


Aaby Library
A trend in today’s literature is that it takes place outside the framework of the book. We experience it on the internet as digital/electronic literature, hear it beep into our mobile phones, pass it on the streets as street art, download it as apps, and experience it mixed with other art and mediums, such as music. These new forms of literature challenge the library in new ways, but they also open up a long range of exciting possibilities – literature must be re-thought. At The Literature Spot at Aaby Library, the new forms of literature have been explored and staged for some time. Serena Borsello will tell you about her work with the Literature Spot and its role in creating a space for these new forms of literature in today’s library.

Gellerup Library
Gellerup Library is much more than your average branch library. The library is situated in a multicultural area and the building contains not only a library but also a healthcare center, the guidance service Folkeinformation, a job corner, the Brabrand-Årslev Local History Archive and the homework help service ”Tusindfryd”(Daisy). All together, these services and facilities make up the Community Center Gellerup whose goal is to provide citizens with information and knowledge about Danish society. Bente Kjærgaard and Lone Hedelund will tell you more about Community Center Gellerup.

Risskov Library
The trip will end with a visit to Risskov Library where Annette Harlis Thorgaard will tell you about the DYRK-project. DYRK - which can be translated into “grow” or “cultivate” – was in-spired by Risskov Library’s garden and is a project based on sustainability, general education and empowerment. Young people and the library have worked together to create an experimental outdoor makerspace including an urban garden, the ’before I die’ wall and an open air library.

Your guide from Next Library: Louise Andersen, tel +45 6192 9008 (preferably by SMS)

We reserve the right to alterations and surprises

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Comment by Next Library on October 8, 2015 at 13:44

Participants said:

What was the best and most interesting experience during the site visit?

  • (2) Best: Åby
  • Risskov. Brilliant idea
  • All 3 for different reasons
  • (2) Most interesting: sustainability in Risskov (garden)
  • All locations were fascinating for their unique service models. Risskov was the most pleasurable visit.
  • Seeing three so different library communities
  • The differences between the libraries + programme. Loved Gellerup – the extent of the work + commitment of the staff for the community.
  • Community Garden
  •  Åbys way to do exhibition
  • It is hard to say because they were so different - but also great in their own ways. Risskov was perhaps the most interesting one.
  • The common theme of integrating the community – sharing of each libraries experiences in this area – truly inspiring.
  • Risskov Library: “doing library” is an interesting concept + worth exploring.
  • Diversity of libraries + services + facilities that are offered.
  • The different library styles, to meet community needs. Enjoyed the art literature installation.
  • I loved Gellerup and the engagement in their telling


Did you find inspiration for innovation of your library or community work?

  • The thinking out of the box at Risskov. Using the space and the co-operation at Gellerup.
  • Yes. Citizen’s participation, library design, sustainability theme.
  • Yes. Many sustainability concepts.
  • Yes. Makerspaces are more than 3D printers
  • Absolutely and at all 3 locations
  • Yes. Especially for designing for play and participation
  • Yes – opportunity to develop makerspace/co-creation into community strengthening moments.
  • A great example of co-design with community
  • Gellerup: “putting different religions groups together”
  • Yes, how to work with youngsters
  • Yes. I found new ways to make exhibitions. Great! And how important things in libraries can be for its area. And how to take care of nature and work with youth.
  • Yes – design-wise: the way shelves were categorized. The idea of “play” and “create” in the socially creative spaces.
  • Silkeborg library. Exploring electronic literature + posing questions to the audience. Engaging the audience with technology to broaden their understanding of literature.
  • Community garden – could apply at one of my branch libraries.
  • After school homework classes, community gardens, knitting
  • Yes, I think so.
Comment by Next Library on October 8, 2015 at 13:43

Take-away advises – for the sites you visited or for the organizations of Site visits

  • (3) Don’t do a one hour PowerPoint presentation (Gellerup)
    • Would have liked additional information from Gellerup, not through PowerPoint presentation.
    • Work more with artists, especially in Gellerup and Risskov
    • My tip would be to give a few questions to the audience to stimulate discussions
    • Thanks for the hospitality, sharing and seeing the excellent organizations
    • I’d love to know more “nuts & bolts” information – how many from the staff are professional librarians? Annual budgets? Extra funding sources?
    • All excellent, but don’t wait for us to settle down.
    • The power of giving up control + definition of library.
    • It was a great site visit. Thank you so much!
    • Thank you for keeping our stomachs happy. Great Danish hospitality.
    • None. Well done everyone involved.
    • Gellerup deserves a special mention. They are doing a great work under very difficult circumstances
    • Great hospitality – enjoyed the visit
    • Enjoyed the PowerPoint presentation. Very different sites – good contrast

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Posted by Next Library on September 14, 2021 at 10:51 0 Comments

Our good friends and partners at EIFL have great news! The new EIFL Public Library Innovation Award call – for public libraries supporting education recovery during the COVID-19 pandemic – is now open for applications.

Read more about the award here.

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