Libraries exhibit: Campaigns & Collectibles

A new display entitled Campaigns & Collectibles is now on view on the fourth floor of Bird Library. The exhibit features materials related to American presidential campaigns, elections, and inaugurations, including books, recordings, and videos, as well as campaign buttons, tokens, medals, ribbons, and other vintage objects.  Items on display are from Syracuse University Libraries collections or on loan from Libraries’ staff.

This exhibit was curated by Ed Gokey, a staff member in the Libraries’ Access & Resource Sharing Department. It will be available through the fall semester.

In the Biblio Gallery: Exhibition by Taylor Davis-Van Atta

WWGII10An exhibit by Taylor Davis-Van Atta gathering the work of four under-represented artists from around the world is currently on display in the Biblio Gallery on the 4th floor of Bird Library. Davis-Van Atta is currently pursuing an MSLIS in the School of Information Studies at SU and is the founding publisher and co-editor of Music & Literature.

In describing the exhibition, Davis-Van Atta says:

The artwork exhibited here first appeared in Music & Literature, an international arts and humanities journal devoted to celebrating and promoting the work of under-represented artists from around the world. This exhibition gathers the work of four artists—American poet Mary Ruefle, Croatian author Dubravka Ugrešić, British contrabassist Barry Guy, and German artist Max Neumann—who are primarily known for their musical or literary creations, but here we are offered the opportunity to examine their creative lives from a fresh perspective, from which we might discover the thought underpinning their more public works.

The exhibit will be on display through the end of May.

For more information about exhibiting in the Biblio Gallery, contact Ann Skiold at or see the Biblio Gallery website.



Mid-20th Century Black Art and Culture on display in Bird Library

hermanleonard_charlieparkerA new display entitled Mid-20th Century Black Art and Culture is currently on view on the 4th floor of Bird Library. Major American cultural icons represented include authors Richard Wright and Gwendolyn Brooks, artists Jacob Lawrence and Romare Bearden, classical singer Marian Anderson, jazz greats Charlie Parker and Ella Fitzgerald, and actor Sidney Poitier.

The items on display are from Bird Library, or on loan from Libraries’ staff.  Mid-20th Century Black Art and Culture will remain up through the remainder of the spring semester.




Libraries’ fall exhibition focuses on Black Utopias

crisis_cover news graphicSyracuse University Libraries’ fall exhibition, Black Utopias, opened on Thursday, October 8 in the Special Collections Research Center gallery on Bird Library’s sixth floor. An opening reception will be held on October 15 from 5 to 7 p.m. The show will run through Friday, April 15, 2016.

Co-curated by Dr. Joan Bryant, associate professor in the African American Studies Department, and Dr. Lucy Mulroney, interim senior director of the Special Collections Research Center, the exhibition commemorates the 50th anniversary of the publication of The Autobiography of Malcolm X, the best-selling narrative of one of the most prominent men of the Civil Rights era.

This anniversary holds special significance for Syracuse University because the Libraries are home to the records of Grove Press, the avant-garde publisher of the Autobiography. Grove hailed the book as one of its “most important” publications. The first printing of 10,000 copies sold out before it was released in October 1965.

“Black Utopias” takes the personal transformations that form the narrative arc of Malcolm X’s Autobiography as the framework for exploring a range of utopian visions that have shaped Black American life. Although utopias are, by definition, the stuff of dreams, the examples presented in this exhibition are firmly rooted in historical experiences of subjugation, inequality, and injustice.

The exhibit will feature the handwritten letter that Malcolm X sent to Alex Haley during his pilgrimage to Mecca, as well as other unique and rare materials from the collections. It includes documents by little-known individuals and such prominent figures as W.E.B. Dubois, Langston Hughes, Madam C.J. Walker, James Ford, and Martin Luther King, Jr.

Other events associated with the exhibition include an exhibition tour and brownbag discussion with the curators on Friday, October 23 from noon – 1:30 p.m. and marathon community readings of The Autobiography of Malcolm X for Banned Books Week on September 29 from 2 to 6 p.m. in the Peter Graham Scholarly Commons in Bird Library, on September 30 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in Coulter Library at Onondaga Community College, and on October 1 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Beauchamp Branch Library, located at 2111 South Salina St. in Syracuse.

For more information, contact or call 315.443.2697.

Libraries’ spring exhibition explores “The Automobile”

auto_lib-news-story-v1_300x301pxSyracuse University Libraries will present The Automobile: Design Considerations and Local Manifestations as its spring 2015 exhibition. It will run from January 20 until October 1 in the Special Collections Research Center (SCRC) Gallery on the 6th floor of Bird Library. An opening reception will be held on January 22, 2015 at 6 p.m. in the Gallery.

The Automobile provides a sampling of the ways in which the automobile evolved in the Syracuse area and a glimpse into the innovations of some of the most significant mid-twentieth-century automobile designers. The centerpiece of the exhibition is the air-cooled Franklin car, the most famous of Syracuse’s automobile lines, with its remarkably flexible and durable wooden frame.

The exhibition will also include drawings, sketches, and photographs from SCRC’s industrial design collections by designers Howard A. Darrin, Claude Hill, Raymond Loewy, Budd Steinhilber, and Walter Dorwin Teague. Darrin was known for his designs for exotic luxury and sports cars. Claude Hill created some important concept car designs, while Raymond Loewy’s photographs document a number of striking Studebaker model designs. Budd Steinhilber was a member of the design team for the revolutionary rear-engine 1948 Tucker automobile, and Walter Dorwin Teague designed for both the Ford Motor Company and the Marmon Motor Company.

Preceding the opening reception, Kevin Borg, associate professor of history at James Madison University, will present a lecture entitled  “A Social History of Your Car’s ‘Check Engine’ Light” on January 22, 2015 at 5 p.m. in the Peter Graham Scholarly Common in Bird Library. The event is free and open to the public. Borg will also present a mini-seminar on January 23 from 10 a.m. to noon. To register, contact Barbara Brooker at or at 315-443-9763.