Exhibits

Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic and Medicine

Illustration of an alchemy workshopJanuary 23 – March 4, 2017
Location: Crerar Library First Floor

The magic in J. K. Rowling’s series of Harry Potter novels is partially based on Renaissance traditions that played an important role in the development of Western science, including alchemy, astrology, and natural philosophy.  This traveling exhibit, Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic, and Medicine explores the intersection of these worlds, featuring highlights from the collections of the History of Medicine Division at the National Library of Medicine.

Related Event: Lecture and Reception

February 22, 2017
4:00-5:30pm
Crerar Library – Zar Room
In celebration of Crerar Library’s exhibit Harry Potter’s World, Professor Ada Palmer will offer an overview of ideas about science and magic in 16th century Europe and give a show and tell of rare books from the period.
Reception to follow.
RSVP: 773-702-7569

Persons with disabilities who need an accommodation in order to participate in this event should contact Barbara Kern at 773-702-8717 for assistance.

In Memory of Charles E. Bidwell, Sociology and Education Scholar, 1932-2016

Exhibit Location: The Joseph Regenstein Library, Second Floor
Exhibit Dates: January 12 – March 27, 2017

Photo of Charles E. Bidwell, seated by a window

Charles Bidwell,
William Claude Reavis Professor Emeritus at the University of Chicago

Charles E. Bidwell, was an accomplished scholar in the sociology of education.  He spent almost his entire academic career at the University of Chicago and his research sought to understand the organizational behaviors and functions in and around schools.

This one-case exhibit highlights a selection of his most heavily cited and influential works as well as his dissertation and accomplishments as an administrator, including editor for three important journals, the Sociology of Education, American Journal of Sociology, and the American Journal of Education.

Concrete Poetry, Concrete Book

Exhibition: Concrete Poetry, Concrete Book: Artists’ Books in German-speaking Space after 1945
Dates
: January 17 – March 17, 2017
Location: Special Collections Research Center Exhibition Gallery, 1100 East 57th Street, Chicago, IL 60637

Die Schastrommel

“Die Schastrommel” no. 9. Bolzano: Österreichische Exilregierung. 1973. Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

Following the Second World War and with increasing intensity in the 1960s and 1970s, artists working throughout Western Europe explored new media and techniques, engaging in participatory and performative practices that tested the limits of language, representation, and action. Across Austria, Germany, Switzerland, and beyond, friendships formed amongst artists concerned with generating new avenues of access to their artistic aims, often realized in the form of public group events, as well as collaborative publications like art journals, inexpensive multiples, and artists’ books, all of which could be widely circulated and enjoyed independently of fine art institutions.

Drawing on the remarkable collection of rare artists’ books housed in the University of Chicago Library, Concrete Poetry, Concrete Book considers how the artist’s book emerged as a significant preoccupation in this milieu. The exhibition establishes links between artists affiliated with the reduced forms and focused design quality of concrete poetry and artists whose unruly, often messy materials and actions defined performance art. For all of these artists, books afforded sites for experimentation with visual and tactile experience, and the activity of “reading.”

Jörg Immendorff (1945-2007). "Hier und jetzt." Köln: König, 1973. Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

Jörg Immendorff (1945-2007). “Hier und jetzt.” Köln: König, 1973. Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

Referring to the way that language takes up space on the page, arrests the eyes, and requires perceptual interaction, works of concrete poetry test the graphical display of language, focusing on the material quality of letters and words. Concrete poetry often required that books take on unusual forms, such as the sequential unbound pages of Gerhard Rühm’s bewegung (1964) and Hansjörg Mayer’s fold-out book typoaktionen (1967), which reinvents the alphabet for tactile encounter. Artists’ books activate the process of reading, inviting the reader to play with and participate in how language and form produce meaning, as in André Thomkins’ “polyglot machine” Dogmat Mot (1965).

At the same time, artists’ books tend to deemphasize reading as a technique for understanding, foregrounding instead tactility, physicality, and materiality, as exemplified in the die-cut multi-colored laminate pages of Dieter Roth’s Bilderbuch (1957/1976). Indeed, Wolf Vostell’s 20-pound Betonbuch (1971), which encases in actual concrete his own book of sardonic proposals “to concretify” cities, furniture, and even clouds, may be read as a definitive if not paradoxical example of an artist’s book: unreadable in any conventional sense, it provokes and at the same time frustrates interaction.

Austrian Cultural Forum New York, Swiss Benevolent Society of Chicago and UChicago Arts logos

In tandem with the year-long UChicago Arts Program Concrete Happenings devoted to Vostell, this exhibition aims to showcase artists’ books that intersect with and depart from the ambitions of concrete poetry and Fluxus.

Presented by the University of Chicago Library, with additional support generously provided by the Austrian Cultural Forum New York, Swiss Benevolent Society of Chicago, UChicago Arts, and individual donors.

Hours: Mondays through Fridays, 9 a.m. – 4:45 p.m., and, when University of Chicago classes are in session, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 9 a.m. – 5:45 p.m.

Related Events

Concrete Poetry, Concrete Book: Artists’ Books in German-speaking Space after 1945 is part of Concrete Happenings at the University of Chicago, a collaborative series of public exhibitions, screenings, symposia, and other programs that mark the return of Wolf Vostell’s colossal Concrete Traffic (1970) to public view following a major conservation effort. Concurrent exhibitions at the Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society and Smart Museum of Art delve into other aspects of the Fluxus movement and Vostell’s work.  Among the programs on offer are Reading Fluxus Films and a two-part Concrete Poetry Workshop. Learn more about all of these projects at arts.uchicago.edu/concretehappenings.

First Week Events at the Library

Library Society Winter Reception for Concrete Poetry, Concrete Book

Thursday, January 19, 2017, 5 p.m. exhibit viewing, 5:45 p.m. lecture and soundscape, 6:45 p.m. reception
The Joseph Regenstein Library (1100 E. 57th Street, Room 122)

Join the University of Chicago Library Society to celebrate the Special Collections Research Center exhibition Concrete Poetry, Concrete Book: Artists’ Books in German-speaking Space after 1945. Following an exhibition viewing, Christine Mehring, Chair and Professor of the Department of Art History, will present a lecture on highlights of the exhibition. A “Soundscape” inspired by select scores from items in the exhibition will be performed in collaboration with the Department of Music. A wine and cheese reception will follow the lecture and performance.

Free, but space is limited. Registration is required in advance at http://bit.ly/2gyeaEE. Free valet parking will be available in front of the Regenstein Library as of 4:30pm.

Presented by the University of Chicago Library Society.

Instructions for a Chicago Fluxus Opening

Sunday, January 22, 2017, 3–6 p.m.
Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society (5701 South Woodlawn Avenue), Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library (1100 East 57th Street), and Smart Museum of Art (5550 South Greenwood Avenue)

A set of “instructions”—inspired by participatory Happenings orchestrated by Fluxus artist Wolf Vostell—will guide you across the University of Chicago campus during this opening celebration for three related exhibitions: Fantastic Architecture (Neubauer Collegium), Concrete Poetry, Concrete Book (Special Collections Research Center), and Vostell Concrete (Smart Museum). Enjoy a variety of free programs, food, and drinks at the three locations. A free shuttle will run between locations, but please bring your own thermometer.

Free, open to all.

Presented by the Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society, Special Collections Research Center at the University of Chicago Library, and Smart Museum of Art.

Use of Images and Media Contact

Images from the exhibition included on this page are available for download by members of the media and are reserved for editorial use in connection with University of Chicago Library exhibitions, programs, or related news.

For more information, contact Rachel Rosenberg at ra-rosenberg@uchicago.edu or 773-834-1519.

Half a Hundred: EALC’s Golden Anniversary 1966–2016

Exhibition Dates: October 28, 2016 – March 20, 2017
Location: Fifth Floor, Regenstein Library, 1100 East 57th Street, Chicago

Half a Hundred: EALC's Golden Anniversary, 1966-2016The year 2016 marks the 50th anniversary of the formal establishment of the Department of Far Eastern Languages and Civilizations (now the Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations) at the University, although the founding of the teaching program on East Asia at the University can be traced back to 1936 when Herrlee Glessner Creel (1905-1994) was appointed to teach ancient Chinese language and civilization in the Department of Oriental Languages and Civilizations.  To commemorate this landmark year for East Asian Studies at the University, in conjunction with a number of other celebratory activities, a small book exhibition is on display on the Fifth Floor of the Regenstein Library. Entitled Half a Hundred: EALC’s Golden Anniversary 1966-2016, the exhibition showcases scholarly publications by ten former East Asian Studies faculty members who made significant contributions to the Department. The exhibition is curated by Edward L. Shaughnessy, the Lorraine J. and Herrlee G. Creel Distinguished Service Professor in Early Chinese Studies, with assistance from Ayako Yoshimura and Yuan Zhou of the East Asian Collection and Joseph Scott of the Special Collection Research Center of the University Library.

Student artists exhibit at Regenstein during FOTA

Four student artists are exhibiting their work on the 1st floor of Regenstein Library through May 8 during FOTA, the student-run Festival of the Arts that encourages artistic endeavors across the campus. 

Ben Veres, a 2nd year in the College, has created an installation, “Slice of the Mind” (wood and paper), along the east wall of the 1st floor.  Ben’s work provides a small glimpse into the magnitude of learning and discussion that takes places on an average day at the University of Chicago. 

Jasmeen Randhawa, a 2nd year in the College, is exhibiting a series of five photographs entitled “Healthy?” on the east wall, exploring the relationship of students and their surroundings on the campus.   Her work poses the question “How much is too much?” Also along the east wall, Diane Lee, a 3rd year in the College, has 14 photographs on display in the style of magical realism.

Angela Zhang, a 3rd year in the College, is exhibiting her painting “Latitude (II),” a work of oil on canvas, on the west wall of the 1st floor.  A companion piece, “Latitude (I),” is on display at Harper Memorial Library.

For more information about FOTA, visit facebook.com/UChiFOTA.

Shared Past, Shared Future: The Marine Biological Laboratory and the University of Chicago – new web exhibit

Shared Past, Shared Future – web exhibit

whitman and MBL investigatorsThe recent affiliation between UChicago and the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) is the latest chapter in the long, intertwined history of the two institutions. Charles Otis Whitman, the first director of the MBL, also established biology at the University. Frank Lillie, Zoology chair, became the second director and remained president of the MBL corporation until 1942. Today, as the institutions draw closer, we highlight and celebrate our shared history.

Faculty reading recommendations

Every year, faculty of the Law School share the last good book they read on Goodreads. The 2016 book recommenations are out, featuring books on law, history, politics, and literature.

The D’Angelo Law Library has copies of all of this year’s recommended books available to borrow in the Fulton Room, on the Third Floor, next to the new popular reading books.

Undergraduate exhibit pilot continues in Regenstein

Sana Sohail and Exhibit

Undergraduate Sana Sohail with her Spring 2016 Regenstein exhibit.

 

The undergraduate student exhibit pilot in Regenstein Library continues in Winter Quarter. The Library invites current undergraduates to submit proposals to curate a mini-exhibit focusing on a topic in the humanities or social sciences using materials found in Regenstein Library’s bookstacks.

Proposals may be submitted by individuals or small groups (including RSOs), but all group members must be undergraduates.  Exhibits are mounted a case located on the 1st floor of Regenstein Library, near the Dissertation Office.

Deadline for the Winter Quarter Exhibit:
Friday, November 18, 2016
Proposal guidelines and exhibit responsibilities

Learn more about our previous student exhibit.

For more information, contact Rebecca Starkey, Librarian for College Instruction and Outreach.

Alma and Donald Lach’s legacies continue in Special Collections

Alma Lach Test Kitchen

Alma Lach, photograph, ca.1980, Alma Lach Papers, Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

The late Alma S. (1914-2013) and Donald F. Lach (1917-2000) were a notable Hyde Park–University of Chicago team. The couple hosted countless dinner parties, beautifully prepared by Alma, EX’38, a great chef, author, and food consultant of her time, and their home was often a gathering place for the esteemed Professor Donald Lach’s students of history.

As a culinary arts leader and a groundbreaking historian, Alma and Donald reached worldwide audiences. Thanks to the generosity of their daughter Sandra Lach Arlinghaus and her husband William C. Arlinghaus, the legacies of both Donald and Alma continue to benefit UChicago’s students and faculty, as well as scholars around the globe. The Special Collections Research Center at the University of Chicago Library has been the proud home of the Donald F. Lach Papers since 1995 and recently received the Alma Lach Papers and Alma Lach Culinary Library from Sandra and William.

Hows and Whys of French Cooking

Alma Lach. Hows and Whys of French Cooking. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1974. Alma Lach Culinary Library, Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

Alma Lach’s Kitchen: Transforming Taste, the current Special Collections Research Center exhibition, displays items from Alma’s rich archive through January 6, 2017.  Alma blazed a path for herself in the culinary world. One of the first Americans to graduate from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, she earned her Grand Diplôme in 1956. Upon her return to Chicago, Alma secured a position at the Chicago Sun-Times as the Food Editor, writing a weekly column on gourmet cookery until 1965. In 1955 she hosted a public television show for children, Let’s Cook. This was one of the earliest cooking shows of any kind on TV, and Alma was one of the earliest chefs to appear before the camera for a regularly broadcasted show. In 1965 Alma launched her own cooking school and was a very popular teacher; she also served as a food consultant for airlines and food companies, such as Lettuce Entertain You, and invented the Curly Dog Cutting Board. Perhaps most notably, in 1974, Alma wrote Hows and Whys of French Cooking (originally published as Cooking à la Cordon Bleu), a best seller that incorporated her knowledge of French cooking and cuisine.

Curly-Dog Cutting Board

Curly-Dog Cutting Board label, Alma Lach Papers, Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

Alma emerged as an important figure in the transformation of American cuisine in the latter half of the 20th century, moving American palates and kitchens away from basic, conventional cooking  to embrace new flavors, combinations, ingredients, and techniques not only from France but from around the world. She was intrigued by international cuisines as well as the accompanying social aspects. Her culinary book collection contains volumes about ethnic cuisines, including Hungarian, Chinese, Italian, Mexican, Hispanic, and Indian. Some of these cookbooks, as well as selections from her papers, are on display in the exhibition.

Sandra Arlinghaus considers the Special Collections Research Center an excellent home for the Alma Lach Papers and Alma Lach Culinary Library for several reasons. “Mom’s entire culinary career was centered in Hyde Park!” she wrote. “Of equal importance was the fact that my father’s collection was already well-cared for at the University of Chicago Library. It was nice to think that my parents could continue to be together, in perpetuity, at the site where they first met (as students living in International House) and lived most of their adult lives.”

A Child's First Cook Book.

Alma Lach. A Child’s First Cook Book. New York: Hart Publishing Co., 1950. Alma Lach Culinary Library, Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

Donald F. Lach, PhD’41, was professor of History at the University of Chicago from 1948 to 1988. His scholarship focused on the influence Asia had on the history and development of Europe between the 16th and 18th centuries. The extensive materials found in the Donald F. Lach Papers have been processed into a consolidated collection, and an online finding aid, an indispensable tool for accessing this important resource, has been created.

The Library is raising funds so that Alma’s culinary book collection and papers can be catalogued, processed, and preserved, and, therefore, can become discoverable by all. Both Lach collections are prime examples of archives that warrant care and discovery. Together and separately, the Lachs helped shape their disciplines. With the acquisition and processing of both the Lachs’ archives, Donald and Alma can continue to influence others.

For information about ways to support the Alma Lach Papers and Alma Lach Culinary Library, please contact Yasmin Omer, Director of Development, at 773-834-3744 or at yasminomer@uchicago.edu.

Discovering the Beauty and Charm of the Wilderness: Chicago Connections to the National Park Service

bear and professorExhibition location: The John Crerar Library Atrium
Exhibition dates: October 31 – December 31, 2016

Associated web exhibit

The National Park Service was established by Woodrow Wilson in August 1916. Offering a rich variety of natural resources for discovery, park landforms, flora, and fauna have been the subjects of many University of Chicago scientific studies.  The parks have also served as inspiration for art, photography, and literature. To mark the 100-year anniversary, we delve into the Library’s archives and rare collections to look at Chicago connections to the parks.

Alma Lach’s Kitchen: Transforming Taste

Exhibition Dates: September 19, 2016 – January 6, 2017
Location: Special Collections Research Center Exhibition Gallery, 1100 East 57th Street, Chicago, IL 60637

Hows and Whys of French Cooking

Alma Lach. Hows and Whys of French Cooking. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1974. Alma Lach Culinary Library, Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

In the pioneering culinary era of the mid-twentieth century, Chicago chef Alma Lach was one of the primary figures who transformed traditional American cooking. As a chef, cookbook author, and food consultant, Alma was widely known for her bestselling book, Cooking à la Cordon Bleu (1970), later revised and published by the University of Chicago Press as Hows and Whys of French Cooking (1974). A graduate of the Cordon Bleu school in Paris (Grand Diplôme, 1956), she was also a member of the Chevalier du Tastevin and Les Dames d’Escoffier. She authored cookbooks for children, co-hosted a cooking show on public television, developed menus for travel and corporate clients, and invented kitchen tools such as the Curly Dog Cutting Board.

Lach also collected more than 3,000 cookbooks reflecting her broad range of interests in food preparation and dining, from classic French and Chinese cuisine to cookbooks popularizing the foods of American ethnic groups and recipe books produced by churches and volunteer groups. This exhibition will explore Alma Lach’s wide-ranging culinary career and display selections from her fascinating collection of cookbooks.

Hours: Mondays through Fridays, 9 a.m. – 4:45 p.m., and, when University of Chicago classes are in session, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 9 a.m. – 5:45 p.m.

Use of Images and Media Contact

Images from the exhibition included on this page are available for download by members of the media and are reserved for editorial use in connection with University of Chicago Library exhibitions, programs, or related news.

For more information, contact Rachel Rosenberg at ra-rosenberg@uchicago.edu or 773-834-1519.

Alma Lach Test Kitchen

Alma Lach, photograph, ca.1980, Alma Lach Papers, Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

 

Discovering the Beauty and Charm of the Wilderness: Chicago Connections to the National Park Service – new web exhibit

bear and professor

Bear in Wyoming’s Yellowstone National Park fed by George Damon Fuller.  The Photographic Archive. Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library. Identifer: apf8-04534

Discovering the Beauty and Charm of the Wilderness -web exhibit

The National Park Service offers a rich variety of landforms, flora, and fauna that have been the subject of many University of Chicago scientific studies.  The parks have also served as inspiration for art, photography and literature. To mark the National Park Service’s 100-year anniversary, we delve into the Library’s archives and rare collections to uncover Chicago connections to the parks.

 

 

Representations of the Holocaust in the Arts and the Legacy of Elie Wiesel (1928-2016)

Exhibit Location: The Joseph Regenstein Library, Fourth Floor
Exhibit Dates: August 16 – October 31, 2016

Elie Wiesel

Elie Wiesel (September 30, 1928-July 2, 2016)

“How does one describe the indescribable? How does one use restraint in recreating the fall of mankind and the eclipse of the gods? And then, how can one be sure that the words, once uttered, will not betray, distort the message they bear?” (Elie Wiesel, “An Interview Unlike Any Other,” in A Jew Today, trans. Marion Wiesel [New York: Vintage, 1979], 15.)

Reflections on the Holocaust take various forms. In the first decades after the end of World War II, many survivors chose to publish first-hand accounts of their experience. Elie Wiesel’s internationally acclaimed memoir was originally published in Yiddish in 1956 under the title Un di velt hot geshvign (And the world kept silent). He later translated an abbreviated account into French, La Nuit, which served as the basis for his English translation, Night, published in 1960. It was this version of his experiences that catapulted him to international notoriety, including receiving the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1986.

Facsimile manuscript of Schoenberg’s “A Survivor from Warsaw”

Facsimile manuscript of Schoenberg’s “A Survivor from Warsaw”

Wiesel’s attempt to reflect on death, suffering and fate through artistic representation, was part of a larger endeavor to represent the Holocaust that invoked severe polemics among artists. Such polemics are addressed in this exhibit through the work of four influential figures: Sylvia Plath (Poetry), George Steiner (Literature), Arthur Miller (Theater), and Arnold Schoenberg (Music).

Special attention is paid to attempts to confront both personal and collective experiences pertaining to the Holocaust and the critical reception of such attempts. But the exhibit also examines the way in which critical reception prompted alternative forms of representation. Such was the case of George Steiner who, objecting to Plath’s “personification of the Holocaust,” attempted a non-personal representation of the Holocaust by rendering it philosophically and in light of the problem of anti-Semitism; an account explicated in his Portage to San Cristobal of A.H (1982). In another instance, The Diary of Anne Frank, adopted by F. Goodrich and A. Hackett for a Broadway stage production in 1955, was criticized severely by the playwright Arthur Miller, who accused its creators of seeking audience gratification versus critical reflection.

Chinese translation of Elie Wiesel’s Night

Elie Wiesel’s memoir, Night, has been translated into 30 languages since the French was published in 1958. Here is the cover of the Chinese translation.

This two-case exhibit is displayed in the 4th floor Reading Room of the Joseph Regenstein Library, from August 16 through October 31, 2016. Visitors unaffiliated with the University of Chicago should contact Anne K. Knafl, aknafl@uchicago.edu, in advance of visiting the exhibit.

Kazimir Malevich and “The Last Futurist Exhibition (0, 10)”

Exhibit Location: The Joseph Regenstein Library, Second Floor
Exhibit Dates: June 22 – October 31, 2016

Black Square by Malevich, in 1915

Black Square by Malevich (1915)

One hundred years ago (December 1915-January 1916), one of the most significant exhibitions in the history of the pre-revolutionary Russian avant-garde was The Last Futurist Exhibition of Painting 0.10 (Zero Ten). It marked an important moment of transition. Up to this point, Russian innovators had essentially been assimilating and developing the creative inventions of European artists. 0.10 revealed that Russian artists had caught up with their Western colleagues and now occupied a position at the forefront of avant-garde experimentation. From being followers, they had become leaders. At 0.10, Kazimir Malevich presented his famously iconic Black square along with thirty-eight completely non-figurative Suprematist canvases, which consisted of colored geometric shapes painted on white grounds… assemblages of everyday materials that were liberated from the wall and floor and slung across the corners of the room so that they defied gravity and existed fully in space. These twin innovations of non-figurative work in two and three dimensions posed fundamental questions concerning the nature of art itself, undermining traditional notions of painting and sculpture, and marking the beginning of a new phase in modernist explorations. [Any] attempt to reconstruct the original show would be well nigh impossible given the paucity of accurate information.

Photograph of works displayed on walls.

Only known image of Malevich’s works as displayed in the 1915-1916 “Last Futurist Exhibition”

Only two installation photographs of 0.10 exist – one shows part of Malevich’s display and the other illustrates a fragment of Tatlin’s presentation. Even the printed catalogue does not provide a definitive list of exhibits since the display underwent several changes as artists added and removed items. Moreover, the catalogue entries are so vague (sometimes consisting merely of numbers) that many of the works are difficult to identify with any precision. To compound such difficulties… many of the paintings were lost or damaged in the chaos that followed the Revolution of 1917, the Civil War (1918–20) and the imposition of Stalinism. Uncertainties about 0.10 abound……The show in Russian is Poslednaya futuristicheskya vystavka kartin 0,10 (nol’-desyat’). Translating the title into English usually entails changing the mathematical formula as well, and converting the comma into a full stop. While the exact meaning of ‘zero-ten’ remains obscure, a mathematical allusion was clearly intentional. Malevich, who never underestimated the importance of the Black square, frequently referred to it as the ‘zero’ of form – denoting both an end and a beginning – and argued that Suprematism went beyond ‘zero’. ‘10’ might refer to the number of artists initially involved in the show, who had also gone beyond zero.

Text excerpted from “In Search of 0,10 – The Last Futurist Exhibition of Painting” by Christina Lodder in The Burlington Magazine, no. 158 (2016), pp. 61-63.

Cyrus Leroy Baldridge: Illustrator, Explorer, Activist

Exhibition Dates: June 27 – September 9, 2016
Location: Special Collections Research Center Exhibition Gallery, 1100 East 57th Street, Chicago, IL 60637

Self-portrait of Cyrus Leroy Baldridge

Cyrus Leroy Baldridge (1889-1977). Untitled self-portrait. 1940. From the collection of Mrs. & Mr. Jay Mulberry.

Cyrus Baldridge (1889-1977) was an artist, illustrator, and author whose travels took him across Africa, Europe, Asia, and the Far East.  His artistic training began at age 9, followed by education at the University of Chicago. Baldridge also developed an acute social and political awareness through a range of experiences, from working in a social settlement house to cattle ranching in Texas.

He began his career as a frontline artist during World War I, where he worked for several newspapers reporting on life in the trenches. Later he journeyed across continents with his partner, author Caroline Singer, sketching and painting the scenes that would later be published in lavishly illustrated books focusing on world cultures and peoples.

As an alumnus (PhB 1911), Baldridge presented a number of his artworks to the University of Chicago, where they are now part of the collection of the University’s Smart Museum of Art. Archival materials on Baldridge’s student days are preserved in the Special Collections Research Center. An important collection of Baldridge art, books, and documents is also held by University alumnus Jay Mulberry, who is loaning many items for the exhibition.  Drawing on these collections, Cyrus Leroy Baldridge:  Illustrator, Explorer, Activist will explore the full range of Baldridge’s life and art, showcasing many of his illustrations for the first time.

Curators: Alice Kain and Jay Mulberry, AB’63

Hours: Mondays through Fridays, 9 a.m. – 4:45 p.m.; Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 9 a.m. – 5:45 p.m. when classes are in session.

Use of Images and Media Contact

Images from the exhibition included on this page are available for download by members of the media, and are reserved for editorial use in connection with University of Chicago Library exhibitions, programs, or related news.  For more information, contact Rachel Rosenberg at ra-rosenberg@uchicago.edu or 773-834-1519.