Tuesday, February 19, 2008

We've Moved

Please check out the new Special Collections blog at http://hill.blogs.lib.lsu.edu/

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Comic Conversation

Graphic novelist James Sturm addressed a standing-room only crowd on Tuesday night in Hill Memorial Library. Sturm discussed the literary works, historical events, and works of art that have inspired him over the years. Audience members were treated to an in-depth description of the creative process Sturm employs as both an artist and story teller.

A mini-exhibition featuring Sturm’s recent work is on display in the lecture hall through October 20.

The talk, titled “James Sturm’s America: Cartooning on the Frontier,” was sponsored by the LSU Libraries, Department of English, the School of Art, and the College of Arts and Sciences. Special Collections would like to thank Professor Brannon Costello, Department of English, for arranging the lecture.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Comic Book Artist to Give Lecture at LSU

Award-winning comic book artist and graphic novelist James Sturm will speak at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 25, in the Hill Memorial Library lecture hall on the LSU campus. His lecture, “James Sturm’s America: Cartooning on the Frontier,” is co-sponsored by the LSU Libraries, the Department of English, the School of Art, and the College of Arts and Sciences, and is presented in association with the exhibition “Super Stories: A Brief History of Comics.” The lecture and exhibition are free and open to the public.

Sturm’s 2001 graphic novel The Golem’s Mighty Swing was selected as a “Best Comic of 2001” by Time Magazine. In it, he uses the story of a barnstorming Jewish baseball team in the 1920s to consider issues such as religion, race, and the American dream. His critically acclaimed, Eisner-award winning 2004 work Unstable Molecules re-examines iconic superheroes the Fantastic Four in the context of Cold War paranoia and 1950s conformity. A collection of his early work, James Sturm’s America: God, Gold, and Golems, will be released on August 21st.

A pioneer in the field of comics art education, Sturm is the founder of the National Association of Comics Arts Educators, which provides resources for high school and college teachers seeking to integrate comics into their classrooms, and he currently serves as director of The Center for Cartoon Studies.

On September 25, Sturm will discuss the history, development, and cultural role of comic books as well as his own artistic process and philosophies. A reception and book signing will follow his talk.

The exhibition “Super Stories” will be on display in Hill Memorial Library through October 20. For more information, visit the Special Collections Web site at www.lib.lsu.edu/special.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Super Stories: A Brief History of Comics

Items from the William Morton Bowlus Comic Book Collection will be on display at Hill Memorial Library beginning June 25.

The Bowlus Collection includes more than 7,000 comic books and related materials, many from the silver age of comic books published during the late 1950s through the 1960s. Bowlus, an LSU alumnus, began collecting comics in grade school and continued until his untimely death in his late 20s, due to Marfan syndrome. The collection was donated to the LSU Libraries by his mother, Martha Bowlus, to honor his memory and preserve a collection he loved. The Bowlus Collection offers a wealth of graphic art and storytelling from a formative period in American cultural history.

The exhibit demonstrates that comic books are a rich popular culture resource. As with all forms of literary and artistic expression, comic books both reflect and influence to a degree the culture out of which they are created. Comics tackle contemporary issues and classic tales, and storylines are fleshed out in a universe with plots and characters ranging from the stereotypical to the fantastic.

Many of the materials that will be on display reflect comics produced from 1960 to 1985, with an emphasis on superhero titles. Loaned materials published in more recent years also supplement the collection. Topics of analysis include censorship, democracy and patriotism, race, gender and alternative and web comics. The exhibition will also include an industry history, with a focus on Marvel Comics, EC Comics and DC Comics.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

New View

View New Orleans in three dimensions! A new map on loan from the Coastal Studies Institute at LSU features the Crescent City in a way you've never seen it before - stop by Hill Memorial Library in the next few weeks to view this addition to our exhibition, An Unnatural Metropolis. The exhibition will remain on display through June 2, 2007.

The 3-D image of New Orleans is termed an Analyph, which is a composite picture consisting of two slightly different perspectives of the same subject in contrasting colors that are superimposed on each other, producing a three-dimensional effect when viewed through two correspondingly colored filters. The 3-D relief observed in the image viewed through the appropriate glasses reveals the "bowl" shape of New Orleans. The relief in the image is greatly exaggerated to obtain the effect. The elevation data used to create the relief was derived from airborne Lidar (LIght Detection and Ranging), which is a highly accurate remote sensing technology that measures distances using lasers. The relief was overlaid with a 30-meter resolution Landsat Thematic Mapper satellite image obtained in 2005 after Katrina landfall. The colors in the image are created primarily from infrared light.

Special thanks to DeWitt Braud, Coastal Studies Institute, LSU, for facilitating the loan and providing interpretive text.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Mini-exhibition and events in Hill

On March 12 and 13, the internationally celebrated poet Rosanna Warren will be speaking in Hill Memorial Library. Ms Warren's awards include the Witter Bynner Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the May Sarton Prize, the Ingram Merrill Foundation Award, a Lila Wallace Readers Digest Award, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the American Council of Learned Societies. She is the daughter of Robert Penn Warren.

Athena's Visit from 'Orbiana Oliveto'

Ms Warren is here as a Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar, and her visit includes several events listed below. Each of these promises to be a unique and exciting experience; you are cordially invited to attend all.

Monday March 12

4:30 p.m., Hill Memorial Library Lecture Hall. "Collaboration: Poets and Painters, Rosanna Warren and James McGarrell." Exhibition and presentation on "Orbiana Oliveto," 19 pairs of poems and monotypes by Warren and McGarrell. Exhibition dates March 5 -15, 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Co-sponsored by Phi Beta Kappa and the School of Art, in collaboration with the LSU Libraries.

James McGarrell has taught at Indiana University and Washington University, and his work appears in museums and private collections throughout America and Europe, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art, Whitney Museum, and Hirshhorn Museum. A Fulbright and Guggenheim Fellow, he has also received awards from the State Academy of Fine Arts, Stuttgart and the American Academy of Arts and Letters, two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts Grants, a National Institute of Arts and Letters Citation and Grant, and a Tamarind Lithography Workshop Fellowship.

"Orbiana Oliveto" (on display in the lecture hall) is a suite of 19 drawings, each 22 x 30 inches, made and printed in the monotype medium on the intaglio press of the Ligurian Study Center for the Arts and Humanities at Bogliasco, Italy, in March and April of 2003. Rosanna Warren wrote 19 short prose poems (also displayed) to accompany them.

Tuesday March 13

4:00 p.m. James McGarrell speaks about his art, Hill Memorial Library Lecture Hall. Co-Sponsored by Phi Beta Kappa and the School of Art, in collaboration with the LSU Libraries.

5:30 p.m., Hill Memorial Library Lecture Hall. Reading by Rosanna Warren. Co-Sponsored by Phi Beta Kappa and Readers & Writers. Readers & Writers reception and book signing follows. Donations to Readers & Writers welcome to support future events.

Free Lecture on March 18

Join us for a lecture by Craig E. Colten, award-winning author of An Unnatural Metropolis: Wresting New Orleans from Nature, on Sunday, March 18 at 3 pm in the Lecture Hall of Hill Memorial Library at LSU. The lecture is free and open to the public; a reception and book signing will follow. The exhibition "An Unnatural Metropolis" will be open for viewing from 3 - 5 pm.

About the speaker:

Craig E. Colten is the Carl O. Sauer Professor of Geography at LSU. His book An Unnatural Metropolis has been heralded by the Journal of American History as “an evocative hybrid of environmental history, urban ecology, social struggle.” It has garnered national praise and was named the winner of the John Brinckerhoff Jackson Prize by the Association of American Geographers, the same association that honored Colten with the Media Achievement Award in 2006 for his work with the media, particularly following hurricane Katrina. In addition, the Pioneer American Society recently named Colten as the recipient of the Fred B. Kniffen Book Award.

For more information on the exhibition "An Unnatural Metropolis," click here.

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Friday, February 16, 2007

Oral History Workshop at Bluebonnet Public Library

LSU Libraries' T. Harry Williams Center for Oral History Director, Jennifer Abraham, is conducting an afternoon oral history workshop at Bluebonnet Library on Saturday, February 24, from 2-4pm.

The workshop is part of the One Book/One Community program, sponsored by the East Baton Rouge Parish Library and the Baton Rouge Area Chamber. It is free and open to the public. The One Book/One Community Program’s Spring 2007 book, is To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee. For more details, click here.

The workshop will feature an audio/digital presentation on the desegregation activities of Baton Rouge citizens as told through oral history narratives housed by the Center. The workshop will introduce participants to the field of oral history and prepare them to conduct interviews through a variety of instruction and exercises. If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Abraham at jabrah1@lsu.edu or 225-578-7439.