Brooklyn Is...

Center for Brooklyn History

On September 14, 2023, Brooklyn Public Library’s Center for Brooklyn History opened its doors after more than three years of pandemic closure and construction with the exhibition Brooklyn is…. 

Brooklyn is… explores the neighborhoods and people of Brooklyn, and invites us to reflect on Brooklyn’s endless complexity. The exhibition combines photographs and maps from the Center for Brooklyn History’s vast collection, pairing these items in mini-portraits of some of Brooklyn’s dynamic neighborhoods. 

Woven throughout the exhibition are personal stories from Brooklynites who share anecdotes, recollections, impressions, and feelings about Brooklyn. The general public is invited to add their voice by uploading photos or brief reflections through this form on the BPL website. These submissions will be projected on the wall in Center for Brooklyn History’s Great Hall, continuously updating the portrait of what Brooklyn is… 

Juxtaposing images and maps of Brooklyn and words of Brooklynites, Brooklyn is… offers a portrait of the borough that reveals the joys, contradictions, differences, and similarities of this complicated place. Brooklyn is… presents just a glimpse. There is no simple or single answer to what Brooklyn is… !

Click here for an accessible online tour of the exhibition which includes image descriptions of some of the visual highlights.


Preview the Exhibit