On May 26th, 1995, the Vancouver Public Library Square opened at 350 West Georgia. This Moshe Safdie-designed building – described as a ‘rectangle within an ellipse’ – took 26 months to finish. 600 truckloads of books and equipment made their way to the Square from the original library site at Robson and Burrard.
To commemorate the grand opening, the Friends of the Vancouver Public Library decided to commission artists to create stamps that would illustrate the VPL’s vision of ‘enriching society and inspiring the human spirit by encouraging exploration of the wildest range of information, ideas, wisdom and culture.’
Local artist Ed Varney helmed the project and a pool of 100 artist submissions was winnowed down to the 30 most interesting and colourful. The winning stamps were produced by Varney, transformed into digital imagery by Vancouver photographer Henri Robideau and then hand-perforated on a machine from 1896.
Here is a selection of some of the special edition Artistamps and their artists..