Haley Brown, History of Art major (Class of 2016) and Library Dean’s Fellow, will present Contemporary Artists’ Books in Digital Humanities Projects at Vanderbilt in a panel session on Friday, January 8, at the 2016 College Book Art Association National Conference. The session, entitled “Visualizing Collections: Artists’ Books at Vanderbilt’s Heard Library,” will be held from 10:00-11:30 am in the Lower Level Meeting Room of the Vanderbilt Student Life Center.
Other Vanderbilt panelists are Mary Anne Caton, senior consultant for educational and interpretive programs at the Heard Library, Folding, Printing, Binding, Cutting: Contemporary Artists’ Books; and Jana Harper, senior lecturer with the Department of Art, Collecting Books for Personal Pleasure and Useful Pedagogy. Tate Shaw, director of the Visual Studies Workshop and assistant professor of English at SUNY Brockport, is the panel moderator.
Brown’s presentation is based on her Library Dean’s Fellow project during the fall semester 2015. From Southern presses in Florida, Georgia, Virginia, and Alabama to those in the West and Northeast, the 400-plus artists’ books in Special Collections represent diverse traditions in book objects—“books intended as works of art in themselves and designed as an artistic whole, integrating binding, text, illustration, etc.” Artists have used their book arts to explore topics like race, memory, and dreams. The goal of this project is to create a visual representation of the context for the book’s creation and a website layering the network analysis of this collection with a map of the artists’ presses together with selected collection images and video. Many of the approximately 500 books in Special Collections were cataloged and digitized for the 2012 exhibition, The Book as Art.
Brown digitized the remaining artists’ books, following archival standards, to create a website including network analysis of the collection, selected images of books, and a map of book artists’ studios, and schools. This project allows users to visualize relationships between presses, artists, and their teachers, schools, and styles.
For more information about the College Book Art Association’s National Conference, January 7-9—“Telling the Story”—go to http://www.collegebookart.org/Conference-Schedule.
*Artist’s book from Special Collections, Heard Library, Vanderbilt University **CBAA panelists (from left to right): Jana Harper, Tate Shaw, and Haley Brown