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Preservation Week 2015

Monday, April 27, 2015 8:46 am

2015-SAA-PresWeek-poster-final

Preservation Week is an annual event sponsored by ALA which is focused on bringing attention to preservation issues. This year, April 26 – May 2 has been designated as the week to celebrate and bring attention to our preservation needs. In 2004, Heritage Preservation carried out the first national survey, called the Heritage Health Index. The HHI attempted to document preservation needs in libraries, museums, and archives. The 2004 survey showed that roughly 1.3 billion items needed treatment to reduce the risk and rate of damage.

Some of you may remember our assessment and box enclosure of the Philomathesian banner in our collection. Every collection has important and unique items like this that they cannot treat and conserve properly.

This week, ZSR has a Preservation Week exhibit near the library entrance which attempts to show some of the issues involved in preservation of library materials and the theme for the Society of American Archivists Preservation Section: Preservation Advocacy.

Release: From Stigma to Acceptance – Library Exhibit and Panels

Thursday, March 19, 2015 9:30 am

An intriguing library exhibit and panel discussion will take place on Thursday, March 19 and Friday, March 20th. Professor Lisa Blee’s class interviewed and studied recently released individuals from the criminal justice system. The exhibit features art by these individuals, as well as quotes and narratives about their experiences. The exhibit Release: From Stigma to Acceptance can be seen in the library atrium.

MassIncarcerationSymposiumFinal

There will be a guest speaker and faculty panel on Thursday, March 19th in the ZSR Auditorium from 4-6. On Friday, March 20th, the students from Professor Blee’s class will hold a panel followed by a reception in the atrium for this exceptional exhibit. These events are sponsored by the WFU Humanities Institute and the National Endowment for the Humanities. I encourage you to attend as many of these events as you can.

Wake Forest Press Celebrates 40 Years

Monday, March 9, 2015 1:19 pm

The Wake Forest University Press is celebrating its 40th year publishing contemporary Irish poetry. Over four decades WFU Press has become recognized internationally as the premier publisher of Irish poetry. A library exhibit honoring the anniversary of the WFU Press has been installed near the Starbucks entrance in ZSR Library.

In 1975, Dillon Johnston, a Professor of English at Wake Forest realized that much of Irish poetry was not available in the U.S. Johnston approached Provost, Ed Wilson and the administration about establishing a small press that would specialize in Irish poetry. Shortly afterwards, President Scales approved this proposal and Wake Forest University Press began. Dillon Johnston taught at Wake Forest until 2000. During the time of his directorship, he and his wife and co-publisher Guinn Batten brought many Irish poets to this area and to their mountain house in Virginia called “The Shack.” A book, entitled, The Shack: Irish Poets in the Foothills and Mountains of the Blue Ridge, is being published with the art and poetry created while these poets and artists visited “the shack.” Irish poets have visited Wake Forest over the years, including Ciaran Carson and Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin, Conor O’Callaghan and Vona Groarke and others, making a strong connection between the poets of Ireland and Wake Forest University Press.

Wildlife Photography Exhibit

Friday, February 27, 2015 3:54 pm

Tigers from student photo exhibit

Working with Sandra McMullen from the Center for Global Programs and Studies and Wake Forest Freshman, Suyash Keshari, an amateur wildlife photographer from India, we installed a photography exhibit in the east side of the atrium.

Suyash’s work is excellent and features many of the animals you’d see on an Indian or African safari: ostrich, tiger, elephant, monkeys, etc. I think you’ll agree his work could easily be featured in any publication that features wildlife. Suyash is a business major, but hopes to use his photography to help with the conservation of wildlife and their habitat. More of Suyash’s photography is here.

Philomathesian Banner Finds a Cozy Home

Monday, February 9, 2015 3:37 pm

In November, Claudia Walpole, a textile conservator came to ZSR Library and did a conservation assessment of our Philomathesian banner. The Philomathesians were a literary society on the old campus. Claudia discovered the banner was painted by abolitionist David Bustill Bowser (1820-1900) because she found his name was on a small shard of paint that had fallen off the banner. It turns out that Bowser, a free black man, was a cousin of Frederick Douglass whose home was on the underground railroad.

Bowser was a portrait painter, who painted banners during the Civil War for black regiments as well as for other organizations as an income. ZSR Archivist, Rebecca Petersen, researched this and discovered this banner was purchased by women from an early sister school of Wake Forest, Oxford Female Seminary (first President was also Samuel Wait). The Oxford Female Seminary’s Clio Society purchased this banner as a gift for their brothers at Wake Forest. The banner was painted on both sides of a piece of silk. Over the past 100 years, the silk has started to decompose and tear. The paint on both sides of the banner have cracked off into scattered pieces of a jigsaw-like puzzle. The serious preservation issues are self evident, and it doesn’t seem like all the king’s men and all the king’s horses can put them back together again.

Philomathesian banner menioned

-exerpt about the banner from the Philomathesian ledger

In March, 2014, Wake Forest Magazine did a piece called “Finding A Piece of History” about this banner. The banner was also named as one of North Carolina’s Endangered artifacts by the North Carolina Preservation Consortium.

Philomathesian banner in archival box for safe storage

-the Philomathesian banner in the new box

I recently began work on an over-sized archival box (46×46″) to store this banner. I ordered a pre-made box, but after Claudia Walpole, the conservator visited, she advised including the wooden rod with the banner in the box. When the box arrived, I enlarged the box, to create space to accommodate the wooden rod, and also made a holder to keep the rod in place. I lined the box with six layers of thin foam padding, topped with a layer of muslin and archival tissue. After the banner was carefully placed in the box, the same layers of padding was placed on top. The Philomathesian banner will be stored in an Archives storage area for now. Cozy as a bug in a rug, this banner now awaits restoration.

The Hope of a Thick Rope Exhibit

Friday, September 26, 2014 4:06 pm

Hope of a Thick Rope exhibit

The Hope of a Thick Rope exhibit is an exhibit about rural China brought to ZSR by WFU student, Eagle Jin ’16. This photography exhibit focused on the social customs of the Chun’an mountainous region in China. It attempts to draw attention to the socioeconomic disparity and ecological issues on this region. The photographs are placed between the bookshelves and also in the window well of the east side of the atrium. There will be an Opening Reception on Monday,September 29th from 4 – 5:30 pm in the atrium, with remarks and refreshments. Please come.

Sustainability Exhibit: Make Every Bite Count

Wednesday, September 3, 2014 12:45 pm

Sustainability Exhibit in ZSR

The Sustainability Office has a Fall Speaker Series which is exploring the farming and food we eat: how it is grown, who grows it, and issues surrounding this topic. I worked with Program Coordinator for the Office of Sustainability, Hannah Slodounik to put up an exhibit in ZSR to promote the series called “Make Every Bite Count” and this provocative subject which affects all of our lives.

There will be three events in the series:

  • Wednesday, September 10a panel discussion called Make Every Bite Count will include Orchardist, Eliza Greenman of Foggy Ridge Cider; Eric Hallman of The Livestock Conservancy; April MacGregor, of The Farmer’s Daughter brand; and will be moderated by Jeanette Wesley, Regional Slow Food Governor.
  • Tuesday, October 2GMO OMG: Documentary Film and Discussion- This film made by director and concerned father Jeremy Seifert, explores the issues around GMO’s and how they are affecting our diet.
  • Tuesday, November 4Keynote speaker, Vandana Shiva. In November 2010, Forbes Magazine identified Dr. Shiva as one of the Seven Most Powerful Women on the Globe. She will speak on issues relating to women in the Third World and Navdanya, a national movement to protect the diversity and integrity of living resources – especially native seed – and to promote organic farming and fair trade, which she founded.

I encourage you to check out the library exhibit and these fascinating speakers.

Mail Art Exhibit

Wednesday, July 9, 2014 9:34 am

Mail art? It sounds made up, but it is a real, though niche art movement. Mail art grew out of the Fluxus movement during the 1950’s and has grown ever since. Mail art can be envelopes, postcards, found objects, rubber stamped and collaged images or virtually anything that can be mailed.

Mail Art Exhibit

The mail art in the current exhibit is from the collection of Winston-Salem resident, Jon Foster.
This work includes letters, envelopes, handmade paper and stamps, and artists’ books.

Mail Art Exhibit

This exhibit of mail art makes this familiar form accessible to anyone. Please visit the exhibit and enjoy these creative pieces of mail art.

Mail Art Exhibit

“The purpose of mail art, an activity shared by many artists throughout the world, is to establish an aesthetical communication between artists and common people in every corner of the globe, to divulge their work outside the structures of the art market and outside the traditional venues and institutions: a free communication in which words and signs, texts and colours act like instruments for a direct and immediate interaction.” – Loredana Parmesani

Mail Art Exhibit

Asolare Art Exhibit: Paintings by Raed Al-Rawi

Thursday, June 5, 2014 5:25 pm

Raed Al-Rawi painting

A new group of paintings by Raed Al-Rawi have been installed by John Chapman of the Asolare Art Foundation. Al-Rawi is an Iraqi native who has lived in the US for 28 years. His evocative and colorful figurative work is worth experiencing. Take a look and enjoy a summer of art in ZSR.

Raed Al-Rawi painting

Preservation Week 2014

Wednesday, April 30, 2014 8:36 am

Preservation Week 2014 (Analog)

Preservation Week is celebrated by libraries all over the country. Libraries present events, activities, and resources that highlight what we can do, individually and together, to preserve our personal and shared collections. Preservation Week was created in 2010 because some 630 million items in collecting institutions require immediate attention and care. Many libraries have no one responsible for the preservation of their materials, so this event helps focus attention on best practices in the field for both individuals and institutions.

Preservation Week 2014 (Digital)

This year for Preservation Week, I worked with our Digital Initiatives Librarian, Chelcie Rowell, to spotlight obsolete media and explore the preservation challenges they present. Together with Rebecca Petersen, Chelcie and I gathered quite a collection of obsolete media both from Special Collections & Archives and from the personal collections of resident ZSR geeks. On the digital preservation side of the exhibit, we have a large collection of formats of the White Album by The Beatles, as well as a laser disc of The Lion King and VHS tapes of Star Wars. On the analog preservation side of the exhibit, we have a collection of care and handling advice and old photos demonstrating the hazards of light and humidity to these items. Chelcie and I also collaborated to design a Preservation Week poster about the proliferation of storage media.

Preservation Week 2014 (Poster)


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