The Mystery and Emotion of “Blue”

By: Kevin Grace

The Three PrincessesIt is a color that has both negative and positive connotations, is symbolic of mysticism, social rank, both high and low emotions, and of serenity and wisdom.  Blue is a color that is a signifier of both Hell and purity, of luxury and dignity.  There are as many interpretations of what “blue” symbolizes as there are cultures in the world.

And the symbolism of the color is the rationale behind an online exhibit created by Archives & Rare Books Library.  Intended to highlight the spectrum of rare books in the collections, the selections show the cultural diversity over the ages of this particular color.   Nineteen volumes are represented in the exhibit, with several examples from each of illustrations and bindings, ranging from a 15th century illuminated book of hours to early Qur’ans and Persian poetry.  There are botanicals, fairy tales, Art Deco bindings, Asian drawing Ms. No. 20manuals, pochoir pattern books, and Turkish ebru marbled paper.  Each indicates a specific use of blue that depends on religion, technology, or geographical heritage. Continue reading

Ancient Greek Pottery from Southern Italy and Sicily on Display in the Classics Library

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“From Greece to Magna Graecia” narrates in pottery the colonization by Greeks of parts of Southern Italy and Sicily beginning with the Euboeans founding the colony of Pithekoussai on the island of Ischia in the 8th c. BCE and the Corinthians Syracuse on Sicily in 733 BCE.

The exhibition, on display in the Classics Library Reading Room through August, features Corinthian miniature vessels, Attic black and red-figure vases as trading commodities, and Campanian red-figure. There is also an accompanying book exhibition highlighting literary sources on Magna Graecia as well as Greek temples, theaters, tomb paintings, etc., from Southern Italy and Sicily from the 8th to the 3rd centuries BCE.

In addition, there is a display featuring Linear B tablets discovered by UC professor Carl Blegen at “the Palace of Nestor” in Pylos. UC alumnus Emmett L. Bennett, together with Alice Kober, published the first definitive list of Linear B signs that formed the basis for Michael Ventris’ identification of the script as an early form of Greek.

pottery exhibit

Exciting News from the Archives and Rare Books Library!

The Archives and Rare Books Library is proud to announce our partnership with the Cincinnati Museum Center. The Museum Center just announced their Shakespeare exhibit, which ARB is helping them prepare! Opening August 25th, the exhibit will be centered on Shakespeare’s First Folio (published 1623). The Folio is generously being lent to CMC by the Folger Shakespeare Library, which toured the work throughout the U.S. just last year. The exhibit will explore Shakespeare through time—how his works have adapted, what’s influenced new interpretations, and how appreciation of his work has evolved. There will be a focus on how Cincinnati has interacted with Shakespeare over time. Continue reading

‘Preserving the Past for the Future’ Exhibit Showcases Preservation Lab

preservation exhibitJust in time for Preservation Week (April 23-29), a new exhibit, “Preserving the Past… for the Future,” showcases the services and mission of the Preservation Lab.

Beginning in January of 2012, the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County (PLCH) and University of Cincinnati Libraries (UCL) began a long-term collaboration to provide conservation and preservation treatments in an equally-managed, staffed, and equipped preservation lab situated in UC’s Walter C. Langsam Library. Employees from both PLCH and UCL work on the general circulating and rare/special collections of each institution.

special collectionThe exhibit, located on the 4th floor of Langsam Library, showcases the work of the lab as well as educates about the difference between preservation and conservation, what makes an item a “special collection,” and the techniques and tools used in the care of collections. The exhibit also features both before and after images of the treatment done to the objects and explains the process. The exhibit was curated by Holly Prochaska, preservation librarian, Ashleigh Schieszer, lab conservator, and Jessica Ebert, conservation technician, and was designed by Jessica Burhans, communications co-op design student. Continue reading

Langsam Display Informs about Sexual Assault Awareness Month

A display on the 4th floor of Langsam Library organized by the Gender-Based Violence Student Education and Outreach (GBVSEO) Team and UC Libraries includes library materials that inform about Sexual Assault Awareness month.

saam display

The GBVSEO Team’s mission is to create a safer campus culture by preventing gender-based violence and supporting survivors through education and outreach. The SAAM display in the library does just that! The display encourages students to educate themselves on the issue by taking out a wide variety of books on the topic. The display also directs students to online resources including films about rape culture. Most importantly, the display includes resources for survivors and information about all of the support services on campus for students who have experienced gender-based violence, which includes sexual assault, stalking, and intimate partner violence.

While the GBVSEO Team has many programs planned for SAAM, we feel that the library display plays a particularly important role in our awareness campaign. Sometimes students don’t feel comfortable stopping by a tabling event to get information, but the library display allows them to engage with the material and pick up resources with more anonymity. The display is also located in an area of campus that has high traffic. We hope that students who pass by the display, even if they do not choose to engage with the material, become aware that this month is SAAM.

The Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) library display was organized and designed by Susan Banoun and Mikaila Corday of UC Libraries and the Gender-Based Violence Student Education and Outreach Team, which includes members from the Women’s Center, LGBTQ Center, Student Wellness Center, and the Women Helping Women On-Campus Advocates.

By Erin R. Mulligan, Gender Based Violence Prevention Education Coordinator, University of Cincinnati Women’s Center.

New Exhibit, “Writing UC’s Past,” Combines Flash Fiction with Historic Photographs

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From the Archives and Rare Books Library

A new exhibit on display on the 5th floor lobby of Langsam Library features original pieces of flash fiction describing historic images from the collections of UC’s Archives and Rare Books Library.

Flash fiction is a term to describe writing that is extremely brief, typically only a few hundred words or fewer in its entirety. The three pieces in the exhibit average only 300 words but are rich in content. Continue reading

Celebrate International Women’s Day with Two Exhibits Featuring Women on WWI Illustrated Sheet Music

sheet music graphic

In commemoration of both Women’s History Month (March) and the centennial of the United States entry into World War I (April 6, 1917), two new library exhibits feature illustrated sheet music from the era. “Sheet music served as propaganda for the war effort, but also offered solace—and sometimes levity—to those on the home front. Between the war years of 1914 and 1918, music publishers produced over 13,500 individual compositions,” said exhibit curator Theresa Leininger-Miller, associate professor of art history in the College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning. Continue reading

Check Out the Latest Issue of Source

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Read Source, the online newsletter, to learn more about the news, events, people and happenings in UC Libraries.

This latest issue of Source includes interviews with Dean Xuemao Wang about creating a Master Plan for library spaces as well as with May Chang about her role in the newly created position of library chief technology officer. Other articles include the announcement of a gift from the John Hauck Foundation for the digitization of Dr. Albert B. Sabin’s lab notebooks, the installation of two new exhibits of World War I illustrated sheet music, a listing of Spring events in UC Libraries, an update on recent staff accomplishments and a donor spotlight of Marjorie Motch. Read these articles and more.

Source is available on the web at http://libapps.libraries.uc.edu/source/ and via e-mail. To receive Source via e-mail, contact melissa.norris@uc.edu to be added to the mailing list.

New Exhibit Uncovers Black History through Arts & Education


On display on the 5th floor of Langsam Library, the exhibit “Uncovering Black History through Arts & Education” features prominent black writers, poets, educators and musicians. Featured in the exhibit are such notables as Rita Dove, Phillis Wheatley, Derrick Bell, Katherine Johnson, Muddy Waters and Tammi Terrell among others. A bibliography of related resources found in UC Libraries is located at the exhibit and online.

The “Uncovering Black History through Arts and Education” exhibit was curated by Meshia Anderson, acquisitions specialist in UC Libraries, and designed by Jessica Burhans, spring semester communications co-op design student from the College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning.

The exhibit was produced in coordination with an event scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2017, 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., fourth floor Langsam Library in the Digital Commons Space. At the event, free and open to all, Littisha Bates, associate professor of sociology in the College of Arts and Sciences, will speak about sociology of black families. Other activities will include poetry, soulful food bites and interactive trivia based on the exhibit. Brandon Hawkins of Soul Palette, a company that creates paint party experiences, will help everyone tap into their inner artistry.

Join Us for “Uncovering Black History through Arts & Education” Event and Exhibit

uncoversing black history

Join the University of Cincinnati Libraries for “Uncovering Black History through Arts and Education,” 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 8, on the fourth floor of Langsam Library in the Digital Commons Space. At the event, free and open to all, Littisha Bates, associate professor of sociology in the College of Arts and Sciences, will speak about sociology of black families. Other activities will include painting, trivia and cultural food favorites.

In coordination with the event, check out the exhibit on the 5th floor of Langsam Library featuring Black writers, poets, educators and musicians. Featured in the exhibit are Rita Dove, Phillis Wheatley, Derrick Bell, Katherine Johnson, Muddy Waters and Tammi Terrell among others. The exhibit will be available February 6 through March 30. A bibliography of related resources found in UC Libraries is located at the exhibit.

The “Uncovering Black History through Arts and Education” exhibit was curated by Meshia Anderson, acquisitions specialist in UC Libraries, and designed by Jessica Burhans, communications co-op design student from the College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning.

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