Sharing Ink hides free books in Melbourne’s streets

FROM August 1, handmade books will be inconspicuously left in various places around the CBD. Tracy Pham tells you how to get your hands on one.

Sharing Ink. Free acts of kindness to brighten your day. Photo: Sayraphim Lothian

Sharing Ink. Free acts of kindness to brighten your day. Photo: Sayraphim Lothian

It’s called Sharing Ink – Acts of Guerrilla Kindness. It’s a participatory art project created and driven by public artist Sayraphim Lothian. For 10 days at the start of August, Sayraphim will be leaving 30 beautifully hand drawn and inscribed books in random places in the city.

The books are gifts that focus on strengthening communities via shared experiences and each will have a handwritten message from the author to the lucky stranger who finds them.

Studying for her Masters in Art in a Public Space at RMIT, Sayraphim has art work on display in the MOMA in New York and the archives of the National Gallery of Victoria, but this project she says, aims to inject tiny, unexpected and magical moments in passersby’s lives.

“I create these works as tiny moments of loveliness for the finder – that instant when the finder spots the work out of the corner of their eye, that moment when they realise that someone has made something and left it somewhere for them to find. That moment is the whole point of the work,” she says.

“I’m working to make the world a nicer place, one hand crafted experience at a time.”

Sayraphim worked with 30 local writers and artists, and various screen printers and paper makers to produce the books for the Sharing Ink project. With their beautiful, hand-drawn front covers,  each book promises to be one heck of a find for whoever is lucky enough to stumble upon it.

Sayraphim will be quietly dropping her books in places over Melbourne from August 1 to 10, so keep your eyes peeled for the colourful tomes! For more information about the project, check out  www.sharingink.sayraphimlothian.com

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