This year, Stanford Classics turns 125, and to celebrate, we have put together an exhibit examining its early history. While small and undistinguished early on, the department quickly produced scholars of distinction. Today it is a major center of American classics, and a world leader in the study of ancient Greece and Rome. Still, the century and a quarter that intervenes between us and its foundation is often a sort of ever-advancing black box—that is, we seldom have an institutional memory that extends any further back than the recollection of the faculty's most senior member. Earlier outlines of the department's history are therefore simply lost. This exhibit hopes to shed some light on that earlier place and time.
October 1, 2015, marks the 125th anniversary of the establishment of Yosemite National Park. To commemorate our nation’s third National Park, the University Archives has mounted an exhibition of photographs of Yosemite Valley taken by Eadweard Muybridge in 1872. On display are ten albumen photographs printed from replicated negatives made from photographs by Muybridge in 1872. This set of images comes from a limited edition printed by the Chicago Albumen Works, Inc. and published by Yosemite Natural History Association in 1977. Only 50 sets were produced. To read more about this amazing series of photographs follow this link. To view additional Muybridge photographs held by the Stanford University Libraries follow this link.
The photographs are on display in Green Library, 2nd Floor, near the Human Resources office (241) located near the middle of the Bing and East Wings. Viewing hours are Monday-Friday from 8AM to 5PM.
The current "Higlights from the Marmor Collection" exhibition, "Josef Albers: Interaction of Color," closes June 15 at the Cantor Arts Center. The exhibition displays prints by Albers from the "Homage to the square" series in the Marmor Collection alongside a selection of plates and the Text and Commentary books from the Art & Architecture's copy of Alber's Interaction of Color (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1963). The Interaction of Color presents Alber's rigorous examination of color's ability to deceive us, with numerous comparative color experiments shown via 150 silkscreen plates, the two text volumes outlining the step by step color examinations. Heavily used by classes in art history, design and photography, the Interaction of Color is one of the hallmark publications of design pedagogy. One of the great masters of 20th century art, Albers taught at the Bauhaus schools in Weimar, Dessau, and Berlin from 1923 to 1933, at Black Mountain College from 1933 to 1949, and at Yale University from 1950 on. This is a unique opportunity to see Alber's artwork displayed next to a sampling of the Interaction of Color. The exhibition is curated by Colleen Stockman, Assistant Curator for Special Projects.
The Stanford Media Preservation Lab and the Department of Special Collections are delighted that Shu-Wen Lin is spending the summer with us in Redwood City interning as a media archivist. Leveraging her interest and background in the arts, Shu-Wen will help to process and preserve several media-based collections, including the archives of visual artist Carolee Schneeman and the archives of Telling Pictures, a prominent Bay Area film production company. Shu-Wen's first day is June 1.
Have you ever wondered why Stanford is represented by the color cardinal, and not the original choice of gold? Or why the university's motto is in German?
The University Archives, in collaboration with Kathleen Smith, Curator of Germanic Collections and Medieval Studies, is pleased to announce a new exhibition focused on the development of Stanford's insignia. Becoming Stanford: The History and Meaning of the University’s Insignia is now on display in the South Lobby of Green Library.
As previously announced, the Ruth Asawa papers are now available. In thinking of fun and innovative ways to present certain aspects of her work, we decided to scan a small series of San Francisco architecture snapshots from her collection and upload them to the social mapping website Historypin, and also include them in their Year of the Bay local history project. These photographs were probably used as research in creating the San Francisco Fountain in Union Square, which features many cast dough relief images of the city. Unfortunately there is no information on or about the prints in the collection. They are likely all from the 1960s, and were probably taken by Asawa (she has referred to taking pictures of the city in preparation). Architectural historian Sally Woodbridge may have also contributed. The varying qualities of the prints implies that several cameras or developers were used, and that they were probably taken over a period of time. At any rate, they collectively serve as a remarkable portrait of the city in that decade.
After more than a year of intensive organizing and arranging, we are very proud to announce that the papers of artist and educator Ruth Asawa (M1585) are now available for research. The finding aid can be accessed from the Online Archive of Calfornia, and the collection record in the Searchworks catalog. A bibliography is also available from the Stanford Digital Repository.
The collection documents her commissions and other creative work as well her involvement in shaping civic arts and educational policy. Perhaps the greatest number of files contain correspondence from a remarkably diverse community of associates: friends, neighbors, artists, teachers, students, architects, designers, patrons, politicians, and philanthropists. She was also close to such major figures as Buckminster Fuller, Imogen Cunningham, Josef and Anni Albers, Ray Johnson, and countless others. In a sense, her papers can be considered a collection of collections. Scholars studying San Francisco history, art education pedagogy, fundraising for non-profits, public art, Japanese American Internment, or Black Mountain College will be rewarded by the collection's breadth.
Of course, there is also a great deal of information on Asawa's own art, particularly her unique wire constructions. The collection contains communication with galleries and museums, many photographs and slides, and insights on her artistic processes as included in portfolios and applications. For instance, here is some detail from an insert in her 1955 Guggenheim application. There are many of these halftone images of her crocheted wire shapes:
Please stay tuned: we'll be posting a few more entries on Asawa in the weeks to come.
Alert 747: Suspected Nuclear Test - A journey to uncover facts and create dialog through humanistic creative production. This February, Stanford University Libraries (SUL) highlights a special collection, Vela 6911 by Victor Gama, with an exhibit on display in the Green Library South Lobby from February 3- March 9, 2015. Vela 6911 is a multimedia musical piece created by Victor Gama, an Angolan composer and designer of contemporary musical instruments for new music. This exhibit offers a glimpse into this vast collection of research, images, video content and musical scores that reside in the SUL Archive of Recorded Sound. It also supports and coincides with the March 6th live performance of VELA 6911 by Gama, the Stanford University New Ensemble and special guests from Stanford’s Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA). Information about the concert is at the Stanford Events Page.