Atlanta's Cover Books: 'A Devotional Practice'

In an interview with Katie Barringer, owner of Cover Books in Atlanta, Ga., ArtsATL wrote: "For some people, spending time in bookstores--drifting through stacks and aisles, letting the senses fill up with the texture and odd joy of all those books--is a devotional practice. We browse. We linger. We fill our lives with these beautiful, readable objects. Katie Barringer believes in this magic, and her store, Cover Books, continues to offer surprising, comforting spaces where all different sorts of devotions--art, photography, food--come together in the store's collections. In addition to Cover's new space at the Atlanta Contemporary, the recently opened pop-up Ephemera, 'a temporary outpost of vintage and rare art books' in Shedspace at Whitespace Gallery, allows buying books to feel like stepping into another world. Tucked away in the garden, the tiny shed that houses Ephemera feels like a dream of a store, glowingly lit, alive with books. Like all great pop-ups, Ephemera is social, intimate, and you just wish it would stay forever."

Barringer, who opened Cover Books in 2015, said her spaces "tie into the culture we're already living in. Books are just an added part that you can take home. (laughs) They can allow you to actively participate in these parts of culture that are thriving (art, music, food)--in a pretty approachable way.... [W]hether it's at Ephemera, the Contemporary, or other future pop-ups, what sets Cover apart from the big-box stores or buying online is that it gives people an opportunity and atmosphere to emotionally connect with the experience of purchasing books, in a way that goes far beyond a simple sales transaction."

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