Art & Culture
Portland Public Library is the City’s cultural center and is the most visited cultural institution in Maine offering print, film, music, and online collections to showcase the arts and creativity.
We offer materials in the arts and humanities, a wide variety of programming in partnership with local cultural organizations, and a place where creative organizations and individuals can share their work with others. We celebrate the broad diversity of our community’s creative expression, and are committed to building awareness and appreciation of the arts around us.
Celebrating the Freedom to Read
September 25-October 1, 2016
As books continue to be challenged, restricted and banned at schools and libraries across the country, we pause to think about censorship and celebrate our freedom to read and openly access information.
The Portland Public Teen Library at Monument Square is home to a new exhibit featuring stories written by twelve Deering High School students from Iraq, Angola, Vietnam, Somalia, Albania, Afghanistan, Burundi, Haiti, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Against a backdrop of new homes, schools, airports, and embassies, each writer explores the complex emotions that arise when faced with a new situation.
Join us on Thursday evenings for a series of films based on banned books. This year’s selections feature some classic American novels, a Stephen King story, and a rarely seen version of Alice in Wonderland. 6:30 pm in the Rines Auditorium. All screenings are free and open to the public. Refreshments provided.
Greater Portland’s only writing group dedicated to journal and memoir writing! Journalists will be encouraged to produce creative, reflective writing through the use of autobiographic and historic elements in PPL’s collections: this includes memoirs, archives, journalism, letter correspondence, and the history of writing in material culture.
June 20-August 13, 2016
Join Portland Public Library’s Adult Summer Reading Program at any Portland Public Library location and enter for a chance to win a $10 gift certificate from Longfellow Books each week.
We show films every Thursday night at 6:30 pm. Refreshments are provided, and all screenings are free and open to the public.
Portland Public Library partners once again with PBS to present the POV Documentary Film Series. The majority of these films are screened at the library before they air on national television. Join us to watch the films and engage in a discussion about the film afterward.
Portland Public Library’s Brown Bag Lecture Series features bi-weekly reading and question-and-answer sessions with authors from around the nation as well as those who hail from right here in Maine.
Stream movies, tv episodes, audiobooks, and music for FREE using your PPL library card. Sign in and you are set to begin. You can borrow up to 6 items per month and borrowing times are 21 days for an audiobook, 7 days for music, 3 days for video.
In addition to our ever-changing exhibits in the Lewis Gallery, PPL has a notable collection of donated and commissioned art pieces throughout our locations including the dazzling new installation The Feathered Hand by Alison Hildreth in our Main Library Atrium.
Descriptions of many pieces and information about the artists are available on PPL’s Digital Commons.
Museum Passes Available
Portland Public Library offers free passes to several local Museums and cultural sites including Portland Museum of Art, Portland Observatory, Southworth Planetarium, and the Maine State Museum. To request a pass for a specific date, with your Library card, call or visit the Lending Desk at any of our locations.
Up Next at the Library:
From the PPL blog:
September Staff Picks focus on Banned or Challenged books as we celebrate Banned Books Week. More »