Lobby Installations

Since 2017, local artist Adriane Binky Donley has dreamed up breathtaking installations for the library lobby. Our community has benefited from her wonderful work—every time people walk through the front door and are greeted by thousands of hand-painted butterflies soaring from the ceiling or dazzling red umbrellas during spring rains or gigantic delicate snowflakes.

Her  latest installation, “Winter Wind,” is  on display  again in the library lobby,   with 1,500 pinwheels cascading down from the ceiling.

Winter Wind

Winter  2023 + 2024

“I’ve always been interested in how ordinary objects aren’t really ordinary, if you allow your mind to wander a bit. The pinwheel is such a whimsical concept that has been around for more than  2,000 years. It represents the seasons, change, good luck, and a variety of celebrations. The twisting and turning of the pinwheel made me think about snowflakes as they fall from the sky. Spinning and twirling towards moving cars, tree tops, and children playing outside.

One of my favorite things about winter in the Midwest—and the holiday season—is, of course, the magic of snow. Growing up in Florida, snow was something I saw in a movie or on TV. It wasn’t real to me. As an adult living in Champaign  -Urbana, snow is very real. I quickly realized snow isn’t just tiny sparky ice crystals softly fluttering from the sky. It’s helping a neighbor shovel their sidewalk, or a snowball fight with my son, or tiny opossum footprints on my driveway…mysteriously disappearing into my garage. It’s miniature stars resting on our rooftops, fences, and mailboxes. It’s nature’s way of telling us to slow down, make memories, or to pause and whisper into the night air, “I love you…I miss you.” to those who are far away. 

So I decided to make it snow in the library! I hope it reminds people of the magical whimsy of winter and the wonderful community we share, and to pause for a moment of peace.”

—Adriane Binky Donley

giant gumball machine image on front of library, cloud reflections

bee and honeycomb installation in library lobby

umbrella installation in library lobby

butterfly installation in library lobby, musicians and dancers performing

Adriane Binky Donley portrait and description of butterfly installation

paper stars hang from ceiling in library lobby

umbrella installation in library lobby by Adriane Binky Donley

giant snowflake installation in library by Adriane Binky Donley

giant snowflakes hanging in library installation by Adriane Binky Donley

umbrella installation in lobby by Adriane Binky Donley

Made possible with support from the Library Friends and Library Foundation.

Questions? Ask us.

Evelyn Shapiro
Promotions Manager

Questions? Ask Us.