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Exhibitions

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 scrc@syr.edu.

Current Exhibition


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Context: Reading the Photography of Margaret Bourke-White

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.
Read more about Context: Reading the Photography of Margaret Bourke-White

Future Exhibition


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The Automobile: Design Considerations and Local Manifestations

01-20-2015 to

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.
Read more about The Automobile: Design Considerations and Local Manifestations

Past Exhibitions


Bride of Frankenstein

4,000 Years and Counting

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.
Read more about 4,000 Years and Counting


Celluloid World Exhibit

Shaping a Celluloid World
On View at the Palitz Gallery in New York City

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.
Read more about Shaping a Celluloid World
On View at the Palitz Gallery in New York City



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The Archive in Motion

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.
Read more about The Archive in Motion


Grove Press

Strange Victories: Grove Press, 1951–1985
On View at the Palitz Gallery in New York City

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.
Read more about Strange Victories: Grove Press, 1951–1985
On View at the Palitz Gallery in New York City



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John James Audubon and the American Landscape

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.
Read more about John James Audubon and the American Landscape


Grove Press

Strange Victories: Grove Press, 1951-1985

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.
Read more about Strange Victories: Grove Press, 1951-1985


Breuer

Assembly-line Architecture: Repetition and Innovation in the Work of Marcel Breuer

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.
Read more about Assembly-line Architecture: Repetition and Innovation in the Work of Marcel Breuer


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The Power and The Piety: the World of Medieval and Renaissance Europe

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.
Read more about The Power and The Piety: the World of Medieval and Renaissance Europe


Plastics

Just One Word: Plastics

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.
Read more about Just One Word: Plastics


Orange Pulp exhibit

Orange Pulp: The Pulp Magazine and Contemporary Culture

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.
Read more about Orange Pulp: The Pulp Magazine and Contemporary Culture


The Silent Scream cover

The Silent Scream: Conflict in Novels without Words

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."
Read more about The Silent Scream: Conflict in Novels without Words


Karl Baden

Covering Photography: Imitation, Influence, and Coincidence

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. 
Read more about Covering Photography: Imitation, Influence, and Coincidence


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Luminous Construction: The Photography of Howard Bond

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.
Read more about Luminous Construction: The Photography of Howard Bond


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New York Imprints: Well Beyond New York City

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.
Read more about New York Imprints: Well Beyond New York City


The Portfolio Club of Syracuse

A Goodly Heritage of Study: The Portfolio Club of Syracuse

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.
Read more about A Goodly Heritage of Study: The Portfolio Club of Syracuse


Dawn of a New Age thumbnail

Dawn of a New Age

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.
Read more about Dawn of a New Age


Decorative

The Marketing of the Candidate

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.
Read more about The Marketing of the Candidate


Fear in America

Invasion! The Culture of Fear in America

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?
Read more about Invasion! The Culture of Fear in America


Black Arts Movement

The Small Press and the Black Arts Movement

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.
Read more about The Small Press and the Black Arts Movement


Sacco and Vanzetti

The Never-Ending Wrong: The Execution of Sacco and Vanzetti

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.
Read more about The Never-Ending Wrong: The Execution of Sacco and Vanzetti


CNY Book Arts

Central New York Book Arts

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.
Read more about Central New York Book Arts


Raising Rebels cover

Raising Rebels

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.
Read more about Raising Rebels


The Art of the Book exhibit

The Art of the Book

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
Read more about The Art of the Book


Miklós Rózsa

A Centennial Tribute to Miklos Rozsa and Franz Waxman

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
Read more about A Centennial Tribute to Miklos Rozsa and Franz Waxman


Imagine! exhibit

Imagine! Painters and Poets of New York School

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.
Read more about Imagine! Painters and Poets of New York School


Decorative

Selections from the Guild of Book Workers’ One-Hundredth-Anniversary Exhibition

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.
Read more about Selections from the Guild of Book Workers’ One-Hundredth-Anniversary Exhibition


Decorative

Limited Editions, Limitless Friendship: A Collection of Limited Edition Club Volumes from the Libraries of Clare and Arnold Kivelson

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.
Read more about Limited Editions, Limitless Friendship: A Collection of Limited Edition Club Volumes from the Libraries of Clare and Arnold Kivelson


That Laboratory of Abolitionism, Libel and Treason exhibit

That Laboratory of Abolitionism, Libel and Treason

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.
Read more about That Laboratory of Abolitionism, Libel and Treason


William Gropper

People Are My Landscape: Social Struggle in the Art of William Gropper

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.
Read more about People Are My Landscape: Social Struggle in the Art of William Gropper


Grapes Of Wrath

Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath: Bitter Fruit of the Depression.

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.
Read more about Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath: Bitter Fruit of the Depression.


Draw Your Own Conclusions: Political Cartooning Then and ? exhibit

Draw Your Own Conclusions: Political Cartooning Then and ?

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.
Read more about Draw Your Own Conclusions: Political Cartooning Then and ?


Marguerite Higgins

"On the Spot" with Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist Marguerite Higgins, 1920-1966

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.
Read more about "On the Spot" with Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist Marguerite Higgins, 1920-1966


Paper Type  exhibit

Paper Type Image: Elements of the Fine Press Book. Checklist available.

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.
Read more about Paper Type Image: Elements of the Fine Press Book. Checklist available.


A History of Railroads at Syracuse University Libraries exhibit

A History of Railroads at Syracuse University Libraries

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.
Read more about A History of Railroads at Syracuse University Libraries


Book Arts 2003 exhibit

Book Arts 2003

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.
Read more about Book Arts 2003


SU Book Art: An Exhibition of Student Work 2000 exhibit

SU Book Art: An Exhibition of Student Work 2000

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.
Read more about SU Book Art: An Exhibition of Student Work 2000


Hoist Up the Flag for Abraham: Images and Songs of the 1864 Campaign exhibit

Hoist Up the Flag for Abraham: Images and Songs of the 1864 Campaign

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.
Read more about Hoist Up the Flag for Abraham: Images and Songs of the 1864 Campaign


Book as Art: Building a Foundation 1996 exhibit

Book as Art: Building a Foundation 1996

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
Read more about Book as Art: Building a Foundation 1996

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