Dorchester Cartoonist Named BPL’s First Teen Artist in Residence

lj baptiste

Program funded through the Lynch Foundation is now available at Adams Street, Roslindale, and Roxbury branches.

“I’ve been interested in art since I was very small, and I loved reading books and stories, whether or not they had pictures,” says LJ-Baptiste, the first-ever Teen Artist-in-Residence at the Boston Public Library (BPL).

As an art educator and professional cartoonist, Baptiste has collaborated with companies including Google, Hasbro, and PBS to produce essential works of art. But he is perhaps best known for his ongoing comic book series, COMIXSCAPE, which features the adventures of a bright-eyed, perpetually preteen boy and his raccoon sidekick. 

Baptiste now brings his passion for art and storytelling to Boston teens at the Adams Street, Roslindale, and Roxbury BPL branches as the inaugural Teen Artist-in-Residence.   

This new six-month position and program is funded through the Lynch Foundation with a gift to the Boston Public Library Fund (BPLF), and will include up to 15 classes for teens across the three branches, says Jess Snow, Assistant Manager of Youth Services.  

“We’ve chosen those three newly renovated sites for this new effort because we really want to ignite programming for teens in those branches,” says Snow. “The significant arts focus in Roxbury generally is also a very important catalyst for developing this kind of programming there.” 

Baptiste says he hopes that in his role as an Artist-in-Residence, he can help open up new artistic and critical thinking skills to both teens who have little drawing experience and those who have a budding passion for art and storytelling.   

Learn more about the classes here.

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