The Special Collections Research Center regularly hosts exhibitions that interpret collection materials. All exhibitions are free and open to the public. Guided tours are available upon request. To arrange a tour, please contact our public services division at firstname.lastname@example.org.
10-08-2015 to 04-15-2016
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, “Black Utopias” 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.
01-20-2015 to 10-07-2015
Syracuse, New York, has had a number of industrial associations. Perhaps it was first known as the “Salt City.” It was also known for being at the center of a large canal system. Over the years, Syracuse was also prominently connected with the manufacture of typewriters, shotguns, shoes, plows, carriages, automobiles, and air conditioners. This exhibition focuses upon the automobile and its local industrial manifestations, but also explores some of the automobile construction concepts represented in the Special Collection Research Center’s industrial design collections. Material related to the most famous of Syracuse’s automobile lines, the air-cooled Franklin car with its remarkably flexible and durable wooden frame, is one of the highlights of this exhibition.
08-19-2014 to 01-16-2015
Margaret Bourke-White (1904-1971) was a celebrity behind, and in front of, the camera. As a photographer for Life magazine from the 1930s through the 1950s she documented unforgettable moments—African-American flood victims in Louisville, Kentucky, standing in a bread line beneath a banner that reads almost mockingly “There’s No Way Like the American Way”; just-liberated survivors of the Buchenwald Concentration Camp returning the camera’s gaze under an eerily cinematic light; Mahatma Gandhi sitting cross-legged on the floor reading, spinning wheel in the foreground. Bourke-White’s photographs helped shape the way millions of Americans experienced the Great Depression, the Second World War, and the world that followed.
07-01-2014 to 08-14-2014
"4,000 Years and Counting" features treasures from the Special Collections Research Center (SCRC) that highlight the breadth of the Libraries' special collections--from second-century-B.C. cuneiform tablets to the papers of notable contemporary figures like Joyce Carol Oates.
06-10-2014 to 07-02-2014
After its invention in 1869, celluloid proved to be a remarkably adaptable substance with incredible potential. Celluloid was a durable, hard material that was easy to mold. It could be made into a variety of shapes, and it could be dyed a variety of colors. As such, celluloid could be used to produce many different consumer products. It served as a less expensive material to bring mass-produced goods to an emerging middle class at the turn of the twentieth century. It was a unique material that offered advantages over existing materials, such as ivory, wood, metal, and rubber. It could also be produced cheaply, which allowed for the creation of a variety of disposable items. Celluloid was the first plastic to be used widely and reigned for nearly forty years before it faced competition from other plastics.
01-30-2014 to 06-27-2014
This exhibition explores the concept of movement through the materials held by Syracuse University Libraries’ Special Collections Research Center. Organized around a set of interlinked themes—color, combat, magic, transportation, dance, drawing, athletics, and gravity—the exhibition encompasses rare books, manuscripts, photographs, and original artworks spanning the 15th and 20th centuries.
11-18-2013 to 02-06-2014
Grove Press began as a small independent publisher on Grove Street in New York City’s Greenwich Village in 1949. Under the direction of Barney Rosset, it grew into a multimillion-dollar company and one of the great publishing houses of the twentieth century, and, yet, it often struggled to survive.
09-05-2013 to 01-24-2014
Printed between 1827 and 1838, John James Audubon's Birds of America was a stunning visual catalog of America's diverse birdlife. For its contemporary subscribers, it was much more than an ornithological inventory; it brought the remote American wilderness into their parlors and drawing rooms. Today, Birds of America transports modern viewers to a similarly foreign landscape, one positioned on the cusp of convulsive change. "John James Audubon and the American Landscape" showcases selections from Syracuse University's double-elephant folio while exploring the historical and environmental contexts that surrounded its creation.
01-17-2013 to 06-22-2013
Strange Victories: Grove Press, 1951-1985 is the first major exhibition on the notorious American publisher Grove Press. Founded by Barney Rosset in 1951, Grove Press became one of the 20th-century’s great avant-garde publishing houses.
09-13-2012 to 01-11-2013
Curated by Teresa Harris, architectural historian and project coordinator for the Marcel Breuer Digital Archive, it showcases original drawings, photographs and documents from Breuer’s long career.
01-26-2012 to 06-22-2012
"The Power and The Piety: the World of Medieval and Renaissance Europe" showcases the Libraries' collection of illuminated manuscripts and early printed works, including a leaf from the Gutenberg Bible.
09-12-2011 to 01-20-2012
For more than a century, plastics have transformed our lives - from bathroom to battlefield; from supermarket to spacecraft. Begun as a 19th-century replacement material for billiard balls and piano keys, plastics spurred 20th century developments in industry, transportation, medicine, entertainment, and other aspects of contemporary life. The original objects of Just One Word: Plastics represent a material history of the modern world.
01-25-2011 to 06-17-2011
"Orange Pulp: The Pulp Magazine and Contemporary Culture," an exhibition rare in its scope, explores the world of pulp culture through 61 works that include correspondence, manuscript drafts, paintings and magazines. The exhibition draws from the collections of Syracuse University Libraries' Special Collections Research Center (SCRC) and the SUArt Galleries.
09-07-2010 to 01-03-0211
Syracuse University Libraries' Special Collections Research Center (SCRC) has amassed a fine collection of graphic novels, or novels without words. Selections for display were made in keeping with Syracuse Symposium theme of "conflict."
01-18-2010 to 05-31-2010
The Special Collections Research Center’s spring 2010 exhibition is entitled Covering Photography: Imitation, Influence, and Coincidence, by guest curator Karl Baden. Baden is a Boston-based photographer and member of Boston College’s Fine Arts Department.
09-08-2009 to 01-14-2010
Syracuse University Libraries' Special Collections Research Center has mounted an exhibition entitled Luminous Construction: The Photography of Howard Bond.
05-18-2009 to 09-03-2009
For many years, the Special Collections Research Center at Syracuse University Libraries has collected examples of upstate New York printing from the late 18th and early 19th centuries.
01-23-2009 to 05-08-2009
The exhibition, which emphasizes the years 1875 to 1950, includes annual-program booklets, many of them finely crafted.
09-08-2008 to 01-20-2009
The Immigrant Contribution to the Arts in America.” "Dawn of a New Age" tells the story of five artists who immigrated to the United States during the first half of the 20th century.
08-25-2008 to 01-20-2009
Drawn from the artifactual collections of Syracuse University Libraries' Special Collections Research Center, the exhibition of buttons, banners, bumper stickers, brochures, apparel, and other items provides a historical overview of the images and slogans candidates have used to position and advertise themselves in their quest for the White House.
04-29-2008 to 09-05-2008
In this lecture, Sean Quimby considers the role of fear in American life. In the post 9/11 world, we have grown accustomed to periodic “terror” alerts, but how did fear figure into the printed discourses of generations past? What, specifically, are Americans really afraid of?
01-21-2008 to 05-31-2008
Spanning the years between 1960 and 1975, the initial period of the Black Arts Movement is variously associated with the passage of the Civil Rights Act in 1964, the assassination of Malcolm X in 1965, and the subsequent rise of the Nation of Islam.
08-24-2007 to 01-16-2008
Amidst a seeming wave of domestic terrorism, the 1920 murder of two payroll guards in Braintree, Massachusetts, exploded into what could arguably be described as the trial of the century.
06-01-2007 to 08-17-2007
Central New York Book Arts is an exhibition that features book works created by regional book artists, including students at Wells College in Aurora, N.Y., and Printmaking 552 in the School of Art and Design, College of Visual and Performing Arts, here at Syracuse University.
05-25-2007 to 08-17-2007
"All societies indoctrinate their children," observes E. L. Doctorow in The Book of Daniel, a fictional, albeit rather thinly veiled, account of the execution of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg through the eyes of one of their sons.
03-26-2007 to 05-18-2007
The Art of the Book, the Book as Art features book works created by students of Printmaking 552 in the School of Art and Design, College of Visual and Performing Arts.
02-15-2007 to 05-31-2007
Miklós Rózsa was born in Budapest on 18 April 1907. He was raised in Budapest and on his father’s rural estate in nearby Tomasi. Franz Waxman led a variety of musical lives as composer, conductor, and impresario.
08-28-2006 to 12-15-2006
"The avant-garde atmosphere in New York at that time was a close and exciting one," Grace Hartigan recalled of the beginnings of the New York School.
Also on exhibit at the Lubin House 03-19-2007 to 05-04-2007.
04-17-2006 to 08-18-2006
Founded in 1906 by a group of forty-two crafts persons residing in New York City (among them the famed typographer Frederick W. Goudy) the Guild of Book Workers is the oldest continuously active book-craft society in the country. The selections from the approximately fifty works in the curated retrospective illustrate the roots of contemporary American bookbinding as well as highlight the work of some of its most significant proponents.
01-27-2006 to 04-16-2006
This exhibit features a selection of Limited Editions Club livres d'artistes from the collection of Clare and Arnold Kivelson, which was presented as a gift to SCRC in 1999. Founded by George Macy in 1929, the Limited Editions Club published fine illustrated books in limited numbers for subscribers.
09-30-2005 to 01-26-2006
During the decades-long struggle to abolish slavery, thousands of African Americans risked their lives to escape from their bitter bondage in the South to seek freedom in the northern states, or beyond in Canada.
05-27-2005 to 09-16-2005
Cartoonist, painter, lithographer, and muralist William Gropper was born on the Lower East Side of New York City into a working-class Jewish family that labored in the sweatshops of the garment industry.
02-04-2005 to 05-27-2005
In support of the “If All of Central New York Reads” initiative and the Syracuse Stage production of The Grapes of Wrath, the Special Collections Research Center will display some of its radicalism holdings in literature and art.
08-23-2004 to 01-27-2005
NEED A LITTLE PERSPECTIVE on Iraq, global terrorism, and the elections? Step back and take a look at how wars and politics from the 1860s through the 1960s were drawn-and quartered-by some of the nation's most influential humorists and cartoonists.
04-06-2004 to 08-13-2004
"On the Spot" with Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist Marguerite Higgins, 1920-1966. The exhibition features correspondence, writings, photographs, and other memorabilia from the Marguerite Higgins Papers housed in the Special Collections Research Center.
01-01-2004 to 03-31-2004
The selections that make up this exhibit inevitably pose the same questions that arise whenever one attempts to determine the characteristics of a fine press work.
12-01-2003 to 12-31-2003
From their beginnings in the second third of the 19th century, railroads symbolized the rapid growth of this nation. The Special Collections Research Center at Syracuse University Libraries are home to the papers of a number of railroad companies.
01-01-2003 to 04-30-2003
As part of a visual book assignment, Conservation Librarian Peter Verheyen presented my 2-D Problem-Solving class with an informative discussion of artists' books.
01-01-2000 to 04-30-2000
The Syracuse University Libraries' Department of Special Collections is pleased to announce its third biennial book arts exhibit.
01-01-1998 to 04-23-1998
35 years ago, Carl and Amelia Dorr made a remarkable contribution to the Syracuse University Libraries. Since their graduation from the University in 1900, the couple had busily collected all sorts of campaign memorabilia.
01-01-1996 to 04-30-1996
This exhibit, prepared by the Department of Special Collections and the Preservation Department of the Syracuse University Libraries, culminates the work of 2 foundation classes from Syracuse University's School of Visual and Performing Arts.