Library Card Project: Megumi L. Inouye

Library Card Project: Megumi L. Inouye

Megumi Inouye 2

San Francisco gift wrapping and packaging artist Megumi Inouye created today's featured Library Card Project. Known for repurposing found and reclaimed materials in her designs, Inouye is also an instructor for Creativebug (view a video profile of her), and read on for more about her finished piece.

What do you make?
Gift wrapping and packaging are where I primarily focus my creativity. It’s my vehicle for expressing a thought, an intention, a sense of gratefulness that I want to share with my family, friends, and the world at large. I like to incorporate the use of repurposed, found, and organic materials into what I make, giving a second life to the things that otherwise might be tossed out or viewed as no longer useful. The best part of my craft is that there are endless opportunities to express appreciation and as a result, my wrapping work is constant and ongoing. There is a fluid, transitory, and experimental nature of what I do and an immediacy that I love.

Why did you want to participate in the Library Card Project?
The director of SCRAP, my favorite reuse center in San Francisco, told me about the project. I donated a box of old library cards to Scrap around a year ago after a teacher I was working with for a fundraiser auction project offered me a box of their school’s old library cards stashed in the basement for recycling. I felt like I won the reuse lottery! They were meant to be in my hands to be redistributed, repurposed, and just appreciated! I’m naturally instinctively drawn to the look and feel of old library cards. So much work must have gone on to produce this system of organization. The cards also represent a different era for me, making me nostalgic for slower times. My holiday gift boxes this past year were adorned with these old library cards, with my hopes attached for the cards to be rediscovered, reclaimed, and/or kept as a momento. When I heard about the American Craft Council's Library Card Project, I felt destined to win the lottery twice. If old library cards came into my hands again, I was determined to create something paying tribute to the library - the place where I went as a child to escape, dream, and ultimately discover the world of art, craft, and design.

How did you use the library cards?
I created an imaginary gift box (potentially filled with old library cards) in the concept of a sign (a motion or gesture by which a thought is expressed or a command or wish made known), expressing a form of tribute to the library. May the library endure in the midst of old library cards metamorphosing toward a new destiny....

Where do you get your inspiration?
Acts of generosity inspire me. The feelings generated from witnessing, exchanging, or experiencing true, genuine generosity have the ability to light a fire within me to create. My work is the depository and direct reflection of this source of inspiration.

What is your favorite/most read art, craft or design book?
Hideyuki Oka’s How to Wrap Five Eggs. He asks the question: “What is the use of a package if it shows no feelings?” This book validates my belief that feelings, intentions, functionality, wisdom, and choice of material all are important elements to what make packaging and wrapping significant.

View more Library Card Project entries. Five Questions is a brief Q&A about books and craft, with people who love and use the American Craft Council Library.