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FFRPL is the 501(c)(3) charity that raises funds, presents programssupports special projectshelps create specialized spaces, and purchases supplemental materials & equipment for the Rochester Public Library.


The Friends & Foundation of the Rochester Public Library (FFRPL) participates on Central Library’s Exhibits Team; provides supplemental funding for exhibits when needed; and helps plan, present, and promote many of the Library’s juried shows and historical exhibits.

Juried Shows

Art of the Book (left and center), Rochester Edible Books Festival and Competition (right)

For many years, FFRPL has supported Central Library’s juried shows, including Annual Art of the Book exhibitions.

The 13th annual international juried exhibition “The Art of the Book & Paper” will be on display at Central Library August 20 through November 30, 2024.

Current/Forthcoming Historical Exhibits

Secret Stash: Rare Collections from the Central Library will be on view June 1 through August 3, 2024.

Secret Stash includes a one-of-a-kind, large-scale sketch by author Mercer Mayer; a portfolio of House & Garden’s 1937 Twenty-Five Flower Prints; an 1839 hair album (below, right panel); and select pages from The American Woods by Romeyn Beck Hough, containing wood samples from more than 100 kinds of trees across the United States (below, center panel).

Previous Exhibits

Our Nature: Illustration and Design from the Singer Family was on view through May 18, 2024. The exhibit featured nature-based fine art and design work by Arthur Singer, Judy Singer and their sons, Paul Singer and Alan Singer. The Singer family helped produce more than fifty books over the past 70-plus years!

The poster exhibit, Frankenstein: Penetrating the Secrets of Nature, was on view through mid-February 2024. Learn more.

In celebration of its 150th anniversary, Lollypop Farm mounted an exhibit at the Rundel Memorial Library Building in Central Library’s Anthony Mascioli Gallery. The exhibit featured artifacts from Lollypop Farm’s history, an historical timeline, a humane law enforcement display, historical pet care and veterinary items (in collaboration with Genesee Country Village & Museum and Cornell University), and information on the origin of the name Lollypop Farm.

Punjab: Land of Five Rivers was on view at the Central Library Rundel Memorial Library Building, December 1, 2021 through March 5, 2022. The exhibit explored the beauty and culture of the northern state of Punjab (known as the ‘Breadbasket of India’). Punjab is now a modern society of varied religions and ancestries revered for its agricultural harvest, vibrant festivals, colorful clothing, energetic music and dance, savory cuisine, and inspirational poetry.  The exhibit was organized by the India Heritage Museum, located at the Vinod and Vinay Luthra India Heritage Center in Macedon. See photos from the exhibit, and learn more about the India Heritage Museum’s subsequent donation to the Library

Thrift Style was on display at Central Library from May 17 – June 21, 2021. The exhibit explored the reuse of feed sacks to make clothing and other household objects and outlined how the “up-cycling” of these bags mutually benefited twentieth-century consumers and businesses during the Great Depression and World War II. The artifacts in the exhibition demonstrated a mutual goal of sustainability, with local businesses—mills and feed and seed operations—tailoring product design and marketing campaigns to attract customers; and consumers using their imaginations and practical skills to tailor clothing, aprons, quilts, dolls, and more out of the industry’s byproduct: feed sack cotton. The exhibition offered a snapshot of domestic life during and it provided one of the best examples of up-cycling in our nation’s history.

Central Library Celebrated the National Museum of African American History and Culture With An online Smithsonian Poster Exhibit.

Central Library presented this online version of the Smithsonian’s exhibit A Place for All People: Introducing the National Museum of African American History and Culture in place of the traveling version originally scheduled for Black History Month (February 2021).

Learn more about the Smithsonian poster exhibition

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s exhibit, Deadly Medicine: Creating the Master Race was on view at Central Library from March through September 2020 (extended due to COVID-19) and was sponsored by Central Library, FFRPL, the William & Sheila Konar Foundation, and the Israel & Helen Wortman Memorial Fund of The Foundation of the Jewish Federation of Greater Rochester.

FFRPL worked with Central to offer two free online programs in conjunction with the Deadly Medicine exhibit: Eugenics Under the Nazis and The Complicity of Physicians.

Crafting Democracy: Fiber Arts and Activism, August – November 2019

In 2019, FFRPL supported Central Library’s exhibit Crafting Democracy: Fiber Arts and Activism. The exhibition drew upon handicraft to express hope, voice dissent, critique the curtailment of civil rights, comment politically and restore dignity to the human experience in the U.S.

Learn more about the Crafting Democracy exhibit here

Stonewall: 50 Years Out – 2019

In 2019, FFRPL sponsored Central Library’s exhibition Stonewall: 50 Years Out, commemorating the anniversary of the uprising that sparked the gay liberation movement and exploring the history of Rochester’s LGBTQ+ communities, organized by the Local History & Genealogy Division.

Learn more about the Stonewall exhibit here

Because Of Women Like Her – 2017

In 2017, FFRPL sponsored Central Library’s exhibit, Because of Women Like Her … Winning the Vote in New York State as part of the NYS Suffrage Centennial Celebration.

Al-Mutanabbi Street: Start the Conversation – 2014

In 2014, FFRPL sponsored Al-Mutanabbi Street: Start the Conversation at Central Library, an international exhibit of over 260 artist’s books and broadsides that was organized by Letterpress and Book Artists, in response to the car bombing in Iraq, that targeted Al-Mutanabbi Street, which was populated by hundreds of bookstores, publishers, printers, bookstalls and cafés, and had served as the booksellers’ street in Baghdad for hundreds of years.  The exhibit sought to educate and enlighten our community about the ‘silent consequences’ of war, including censorship, freedom of speech and free access to ideas.

Partners: Central Library, The City of Rochester Sister Cities, Empire State College State University of New York, Monroe Community College, Nazareth College’s School of Education, Writers & Books, the Genesee Center for the Arts & Education, the Rochester Brainery and Visual Studies Workshop.

Pride & Passion: the African American Baseball Experience – 2013

In 2013, FFRPL sponsored Central Library’s Pride & Passion: the African American Baseball Experience exhibit, which celebrated the story of black baseball players in the U.S. over the previous century and a half.