By Chelsey Webber-Brandis, Graduate Assistant, and Nate Biagiotti, Circulation Supervisor
More than receptacles of information, libraries serve as sites through which a community can share and voice their ideas. Such is the case at Connelly Library, where displays are being utilized as a means of communication, of commemoration and of the curatorial arts. Here, staff and work-study students are helping to publicize library materials and resources as well as offering insight into the larger culture, both at Moore and in the art world. Current installations, the Alumni Reunion and Pride displays, speak to this commitment.
Though regular semester classes are not in session, June is a busy month at Moore. In particular, this month marks major anniversaries for the classes of 2009, 1994 and 1969 – 10, 25 and 50 years, respectively. In commemoration, Connelly Library has installed two displays to welcome back its former patrons. Located in both the front display case by the elevators as well as atop the oversize book shelf, a variety of materials has been pulled from the archives for the Moore community to enjoy. Included are yearbooks, photographs, and even a vinyl recording of the farewell address to the class of 1969 (does anyone have a record player we can borrow?).
Designers of any generation will enjoy the stark differences between the eras, from the ‘groovy’ designs of the 1969 box to the pre-Gmail email addresses associated with each ’09 student. Also featured is abstract painter and 2019 Distinguished Alumna Susan Sommer '72, with several pieces from the library’s archives.
Notably, June is also Pride month, receiving its own display near the stacks. Work study students Courtney Warren '21 and Alex Getty '22 collaborated to create this curatorial work. Warren, who has a passion for both curation and queer culture, gathered LGBTQ materials to highlight. They include Erica Rand’s Barbie’s Queer Accessories; Julia Serano’s Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity; and anthologies by Audre Lorde and James Baldwin. While these items are always available to students in the main stacks, creating monthly displays showcases the diversity of our collection.
Getty, an Animation & Game Arts major, created a new look for Pride by merging the pride and trans flags and incorporating them into an image of a June calendar page.
The juxtaposition of these displays acts as a marker of Moore’s history as well as its cultural present. Both the Alumni Reunion and Pride installations can be viewed throughout the month of June, with more to be added later in the summer. Moving forward, Connelly Library plans to continue informative and curatorial work, engaging both staff and students.