Be Kind to Books Club

by Vintage Editions

Select Size

Add Custom Frame

Learn More

Shipping for frames only available within U.S.

Add Custom Frame

Learn More

Shipping for frames only available within U.S.

Add Custom Frame

Learn More

Shipping for frames only available within U.S.

Select size to add art to your cart

Successfully added to cart! Click here to view your cart.

Artist Statement

The Works Projects Administration (WPA) was established in 1935 as a government program designed to employ millions of job-seekers for public works projects with a goal of alleviating the economic effects of the Great Depression. Be Kind to Books Club was designed in 1936 as one of more than 30,000 poster designs created by artists working under the Federal Art Project (FAP)—a subset of the WPA—to promote community activities, proactive approaches to health, and positive social values.


In searching for the original image file we refined for art print form, we discovered there’s actually a whole series of similar posters beseeching people to practice care with their reading material. “Don’t dog ear”, “a bookmark would be better”, and “rain is bad for a book” they read. But the all-encompassing simplicity of the statement on display in Be Kind to Books Club really caught our attention. It’s delightfully didactic, a positive appeal to be a part of a book-protecting brigade. This artwork’s adamant but approachable enthusiasm is perhaps traceable to its target audience: Be Kind to Books Club was intended to encourage children, especially, to read and care for books. Stop destroying their spines by folding their front covers backwards, keep them safe and dry—basically, treat your tomes with respect! It’s a savvy PSA—teaching kids to care for books, to elevate them to the status of something worth safeguarding, just might sow some full grown bibliophiles.

Why We Love It

This artwork’s adamant but approachable enthusiasm is perhaps traceable to its target audience: Be Kind to Books Club was intended to encourage children, especially, to read and care for books. Stop destroying their spines by folding their front covers backwards, keep them safe and dry—basically, treat your tomes with respect! It’s a savvy PSA—teaching kids to care for books, to elevate them to the status of something worth safeguarding, just might sow some full grown bibliophiles. The cartoonish figures and playful primary colors amp up the youthful energy, while the underlying theme of belonging and friendship speaks to childhood aspirations. Reading is often thought of as a solo activity, but there’s a definite camaraderie in the cluster of blue silhouettes, and in the idea of being a member of a club ... Read more on the blog! 

Details

+ Limited-edition, exclusive to 20x200
+ Museum quality: archival inks, 100% cotton rag paper unless noted
+ Handcrafted custom-framing is available

Our quoted dimensions are for the size of paper containing the images, not the printed image itself. We do not alter the aspect ratio, nor do we crop or resize the artists’ originals. All of our prints have a minimum border of .5 inches to allow for framing.

Medium:

Museo Portfolio Rag

Edition Structure:
10"x8" | edition of 10
14"x11" | edition od 250
20"x16" | edition of 25

Vintage Editions

For our Vintage Editions series, our curators scour historical archives for both timeless classics and heretofore unseen gems. These images come back to life as exhibition-quality prints now available to everyone. As a bonus, purchasing equals patronage: sales from Vintage Edition prints go towards supporting our growing roster of artists.
See All Editions