30 Dec 2021
PICK A HAIKU AND DISCOVER A BOOK
NLB partners MUJI to bring the joy of reading and discovery to shoppers
The National Library Board’s (NLB) National Reading Movement (NRM) will bring content and knowledge into lifestyle and retail spaces from today. NLB has partnered Japanese minimalist lifestyle brand MUJI to roll out a series of haikus in malls across Singapore. Shoppers at MUJI stores, starting from Jewel Changi Airport, will get to experience these haikus, a Japanese poetic form written in three lines.
For this year’s NRM, with its theme of “Be Unexpectedly Interesting”, NLB has worked with MUJI to create a Wall of Haikus at Jewel Changi Airport that will hold 30 uniquely-designed bookmarks inspired by Japanese block printing. Each bookmark will feature a haiku and a QR code that links to an NLB eBook. Members of the public are free to take a haiku bookmark and through it, find a book to read too.
The Walls of Haikus will also be set up at Plaza Singapura in January 2022. This is part of NLB’s ongoing efforts to make learning and discovery of content more accessible to all, and is part of its LAB25 (Libraries and Archives Blueprint 2025) plan to create nodes around Singapore that offer new entry points into its wide array of content.
The Wall of Haikus will include 30 bookmarks that cover a range of exciting reads, both digitally and physically available for loan to patrons
Featured above are some haiku bookmarks inspired by popular books such as The Black Swan by Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Klara and The Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro, Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowling.
The haikus on each bookmark are worded to provide clues to the names of the books, which span different genres from popular fiction and non-fiction, to SingLit and more. There will also be physical books at the nodes, and visitors can get creative by submitting their own book-inspired haikus on the National Reading Movement’s Instagram page (@readingnationsg) from February to March 2022.
Ms Chris Koh, Programme Director, NRM, said, "For this year’s edition of the National Reading Movement, we wanted to explore new ways of bringing reading and discovery to more people. Through our partnership with MUJI to bring haikus and books to people, we hope to inspire everyone to read more, read widely and read together. This partnership also marks the first of many in our LAB25 (Libraries and Archives Blueprint 2025) as we continue to curate new ways for people to experience our collection of books and resources. We hope to enrich everyone’s learning and reading journey as we nurture an informed citizenry who read critically and deeply from a wide range of sources every day."
Ms Chris Koh, Programme Director of NRM and Mr Katsushi Onishi, Managing Director of MUJI (Singapore) Pte. Ltd.
Mr Katsushi Onishi, Managing Director of MUJI (Singapore) Pte. Ltd. & MUJI (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd. said, “It has always been MUJI’s vision to build and support the local community, where we see ourselves more than just a retailer – by creating a venue to engage our customers with meaningful stories within the store. Our partnership with NLB is exceptional, promoting the art of reading in a space outside a library and engaging the public with a Haiku wallscape that is similar to MUJI concept of antithesis and sustainability. Haiku is a form of Japanese poem with a long history that is close to the hearts of Japanese. Using words that indicate the seasons, you can describe the scene of your heart as if you were sketching it. Isn’t it necessary for the society from now to have the ability to think sensitively about imaginations and the inner side of the hearts? We hope that you will feel it through Haiku.”
The six-month-long NRM x MUJI partnership kicked off at MUJI @ Jewel Changi Airport on 28 December 2021, and will subsequently be rolled out at MUJI @ Plaza Singapura on 6 January 2022.
NLB recently launched LAB25, which aims to reimagine and transform libraries and archives in Singapore for the future. One key role is towards building an informed citizenry, where we aspire to nurture thoughtful people who reflect deeply on what they come across every day, in the midst of challenges such as information overload and polarisation of views brought about by the digital age. The National Reading Movement is a key part of LAB25, offering a wide range of resources and perspectives as NLB seeks to promote reading and knowledge in Singapore. The movement, now in its fifth year, nurtures a vibrant reading culture among adults and seniors, urging residents here to read more, read widely and read together. This includes going beyond the usual genres and also to read in mother tongue languages.
Nodes are central to LAB25, with its vision to build a vibrant Learning Marketplace where NLB’s physical and digital libraries and archives are the hubs of rich content, and its services are accessible through the nodes. Learn more about LAB25 here and the first iteration of LAB25 nodes in shopping malls at https://go.gov.sg/nlb-lab25-malls.
Please refer to the Annex for the location schedule and the list of book titles with corresponding haiku bookmarks.
About National Library Board
The National Library Board (NLB) nurtures Readers for Life, Learning Communities and a Knowledgeable Nation by promoting reading, learning and history through its network of 27 public libraries, the National Library and the National Archives of Singapore. NLB also forges strategic partnerships that encourage awareness, appreciation and greater discovery of Singapore's history through its rich collections in Singapore and the region.
NLB achieves excellence through innovation, focusing on citizen engagement and co-creation, resource and digital innovation. This creates learning opportunities, greater access to library resources, services, and archival collections, as well as a continual development of innovative library spaces. Established on 1 September 1995 as a statutory board, NLB is under the Ministry of Communications and Information (MCI).