Literacy and libraries might seem to go together, but not for Maria Alquilar, who was paid $40,000 to create a ceramic mural for the library in Livermore, California. She misspelled the names of Einstein, Shakespeare, Vincent Van Gogh, Michelangelo and seven others. Now the Livermore council has offered her an additional $6,000 to fly back from Miami to fix the errors. But Alquilar wants an apology first, reports the Miami Herald.
‘Quite frankly, I’m really upset about this,” Alquilar said. ”Nobody at the library has said what a great work it is.”
Number 2 Pencil has a photo of part of the mural. Judge for yourselves. And here’s a web site with more photos, plus the artist’s grammatically challenged explanation of the meaning. She cites William Blake on enlightenment: “When the doors of perception are cleansed all things will appear as they are, infinite.” And perfect just the way they are. Alquilar goes on:
The words and the quotes along with the esthetics of the work is designed to engage the viewer at the basic esthetic level to the intellectual and spiritual levels if the viewer takes advantage of the vast wealth of material that the library has to offer.
Books, mostly. Filled with those irrelevant, pesty words.
Blake came up in an AP story too:
“The people that are into humanities, and are into Blake’s concept of enlightenment, they are not looking at the words,” she said. “In their mind, the words register correctly.”
Livermore, home to vineyards and a nuclear lab, just isn’t enlightened enough to appreciate artists like Alquilar or Van Gough or Michaelangelo.
Alquilar is a former schoolteacher, Kimberly observes.