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.

 

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.

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.

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.

 

 

Shared Past, Shared Future: The Marine Biological Laboratory and the University of Chicago

Exhibit Location: The John Crerar Library, Atriumwhitman and MBL investigators

Exhibit Dates: April 19 – October 31, 2016

The 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.
Crerar exhibits website.

Under Your Feet, Chicago’s Water, Freight, Subway and Storm Tunnels – new web exhibit

cover of bookAn archived web exhibit of the 2006 Crerar exhibit Under Your Feet, Chicago’s Water, Freight, Subway and Storm Tunnels is now available.  The physical exhibit was shown in the atrium of Crerar Library from February 14, 2006 to March 31, 2006.

Exhibit Description: Below the surface of downtown Chicago is a fascinating and complex underground maze of tunnels. Chicago has been able to use these tunnels to solve various infrastructure problems, thanks to an easily excavated layer of blue clay underlying the city.Dug at different depths and stretching for miles, they were designed to move water, freight and people throughout the city. Under Your Feet explores the system—from the first water tunnels completed in 1867, to the now defunct freight tunnels of the early 1900’s, to the subway system we use today, to the Deep Tunnel project and storm tunnels of the future.

A Bold Experiment: the Origins of the Sciences at the University of Chicago – new web exhibit

Zonia Baber Geology StudentA web version is now available of the current Crerar Library exhibit: A Bold Experiment: the Origins of the Sciences at the University of Chicago.  The physical exhibit is showing in the atrium of Crerar Library and will run until March 31, 2016.

Exhibit Description: In celebration of the 125th anniversary of the University of Chicago’s founding, Crerar Library looks back at the establishment of the natural sciences at the University. The early University built programs in the physical and biological science from the ground up. They recruited eminent scientists and designed innovative laboratories and facilities for their often groundbreaking work. These achievements in discovery and teaching have had lasting impact on the sciences.

A Bold Experiment: the Origins of the Sciences at the University of Chicago

yerkes telescope

Exhibit Location: The John Crerar Library, Atrium

Exhibit Dates: September 21, 2015 – March 31, 2016

In celebration of the 125th anniversary of the University of Chicago’s founding, Crerar Library looks back at the establishment of the natural sciences at the University. The early University built programs in the physical and biological science from the ground up. They recruited eminent scientists and designed innovative laboratories and facilities for their often groundbreaking work. These achievements in discovery and teaching have had lasting impact on the sciences.
Crerar exhibits website.

The Studio in the Field: Techniques of Early Wildlife Photography

wildlife image

W.E. Carlin, A Young Buck. From L.H Bailey, ed., Nature Portraits: Studies with Pen and Camera of Our Wild Birds, Animals, Fish and Insects, New York: Doubleday, Page & Co., 1902

Exhibit Location: The John Crerar Library, Atrium

Exhibit Dates: April 6 – September 15, 2015

During the 1890s, technical advances made it practical to photograph birds and other animals in their natural environments for the first time. But faced with the unpredictable realities of photographing in the field, early practitioners struggled to make worthwhile images from the standpoints of art or natural history. The Studio in the Field traces the development of wildlife photography as a popular cultural pursuit, focusing on the innovative techniques and strategies devised to craft pictures that would appear convincingly natural to nineteenth-century audiences.

Crerar exhibits website.

Coal Swamp Fossils: The Robert Springfield Fossil Collection – new web exhibit

Calamites sp.

A branch of Calamites sp. that shows multiple spore producing cones of a sphenopsid.

A web version is now available of the current Crerar Library exhibit: Coal Swamp Fossils: The Robert Springfield Fossil Collection.  The physical exhibition, consisting of 16 fossils, is on view in the Crerar Library’s First Floor Reading Room for the 2014-2015 academic year.  It was curated by Benjamin Rhind, University of Chicago Laboratory Schools high school senior.

Exhibit Description: This collection of fossils was collected by Robert Springfield in mines in southern Tennessee and northern Alabama.  They contain many fossils from the Carboniferous Period, ranging from 330,000,000 -300,000,000 BCE.  The period was defined by the large deposits of coal beds that it left behind.  This massive amount of coal was because of the development of bark bearing trees and the fact that a lower sea level during this age left behind large lowland, swampy forests.  Plant life during the period was diverse, and although this collection of fossils contains several different genera and species, they all fit into one of three categories: sphenopsids, lycopods and pteridosperms.

The University of Chicago Library is grateful to the Springfield family for their gift of fossil specimens, which brings unique materials to the Library’s collections.  The Robert Springfield Fossil Collection is on loan from the Library’s Special Collections Research Center.