Community Art Display Policy

Hennepin County Library Administrative Policy


The purpose of this policy is to define library practice with regard to Community Art Displays in Hennepin County libraries and ensure that this policy is in alignment with the Hennepin County Use of Space by the Public in County Facilities Policy (PDF).


The scope of this policy covers temporary exhibits of art created by members of the community in designated spaces at Hennepin County Library locations.


The library is a unique and innovative venue for showcasing works of art. Art enhances the patron experience, contributes to a sense of place, and engages the mind. Community art exhibitions encourage artists to engage in public life and moves people to see the world through a new and changing lens. Temporary art displays provide emerging artists an opportunity to curate an exhibit and gain visibility in the community. It allows the Library to support public art without taking on the responsibility and associated costs of owning additional artwork.


As a public service, Hennepin County Library may make limited space available within library buildings to display artworks completed by members of the community.

Defined as temporary exhibitions, displays of art pieces from the community may be made available in a designated space at the discretion of library staff in accordance with guidelines and space allowances.

Each library location has the responsibility for reviewing proposals following system guidelines and scheduling.

Prior to exhibition, artists are asked to submit the following. If selected, this information may be shared as part of the temporary exhibit.

  • A sample of their work
  • Biography/Artist contact information
  • Artist Statement
  • Title and date of pieces to be displayed
  • Medium

No pricing may be posted.

Artists or groups invited to exhibit at Hennepin County Library will be asked to sign a Release of Liability for Display form or other agreement.

The library does not endorse nor take a position on any of the views presented in displayed artwork, and the library may refuse any pieces deemed inappropriate for an exhibition.

Considerations and Criteria

Wall track systems and/or display cases are the most appropriate spaces for showcasing artwork done by members of the community. Other spaces may be used at the discretion of Operations staff.

Some examples of items that may exhibited include two-dimensional pieces and small three-dimensional works of art. Large scale pieces are generally not suitable for library spaces as they may present operational challenges.

Priority is given to artists who:

  • Reside or work in the immediate neighborhood.
  • Are new, emerging or have limited access to exhibiting their work.
  • Represent or amplify the voices of diverse communities.
  • Submit art that has potential for broad community interest.

Roles and Responsibilities

When reviewing artworks proposed for exhibition, staff:

  • Use their professional judgment to apply guidelines to the review of applications for exhibition.
  • Are mindful of the Library’s mission, vision and services; and weigh onsite conditions (e.g. available space) when considering pieces for exhibition

Upon acceptance, staff will work with artists to finalize a written agreement to be signed before the display of artwork.


This administrative policy is reviewed at least every five (5) years by the Community Engagement Division Manager (or designee). Upon completion of that review, this policy is revised or reaffirmed.

Policy History

Next Review Date: 2027
Date Approved: 2022