ARLIS/NA Mid-Atlantic

The Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the Art Libraries Society of North America

Category: Awards (page 1 of 4)

Call for Papers: Gerd Muehsam Award

Call for papers on art librarianship for Art Librarians of North America Society Award

The Gerd Muehsam Award is given annually to recognize excellence in a graduate student paper or project on a topic relevant to art librarianship. It was established to honor the memory of Gerd Muehsam (1913-1979), a distinguished scholar, teacher, and art bibliographer, whose support of and dedication to ARLIS/NA was an inspiration to her colleagues and students.

Any student in any accredited graduate library program is encouraged to submit a paper written for a course in the previous eighteen months.

The award includes:

  • A $500.00 prize
  • Up to $300 travel reimbursement to attend the 45th annual ARLIS/NA conference in New Orleans, February 2017. The money may be used to reimburse travel expenses (though not meals, tours, or other costs).
  • Paid registration to the New Orleans conference, February 5-9, 2017.
  • The chance to present the winning paper at the conference as part of the New Voices Panel.
  • A one-year membership to ARLIS/NA.

Requirements

  • The paper or project must have been created or written during the preceding eighteen months by a student enrolled in an accredited graduate library program, or in a post-graduate library school program in art history or related discipline.
  • The paper or project must be in conjunction with a course assignment.
  • One submission is allowed per person.

Format

All applicants must include their mailing addresses, email addresses, and telephone numbers with their applications.

Paper submissions must include:

  • 10-25 pages, as typed, double-spaced on single sides of 8.5 x 11 inch paper.
  • An abstract of 250 words.
  • The title page must include a paper title, the name of the entrant and the institution attended, the name of the faculty member for whom it was written, and the course title.
  • Bibliography and footnotes should follow an accepted format, such as the Chicago Manual of Style or The Elements of Style by Strunk and White.
  • Authors should inform the committee chair if their contribution has been published previously or is being considered for publication.

Internet project submissions must include:

  • A 250-word summary of the project.
  • A stable URL.
  • The name of the institution and course for which it was created.
  • The name of the faculty member assigning the project.
  • The project must be accessible to all of the committee members for review.

Judging Criteria

Papers and projects will be judged on their relevance to art librarianship or visual curatorship, depth of research and scholarship, quality of organization, appropriate use of terminology, style and readability, and originality of thought or observation.

Application & Deadline

Entries must be postmarked by the end of the day, November 15, 2016. They will not be returned. All applicants should receive notification of the results by December 15, 2016.

Send entries to:

John Hagood
Chair, Gerd Muehsam Award Committee
National Gallery of Art Library
2000B South Club Drive – DLR
Landover MD 20785-3068
j-hagood@nga.gov
(202) 842-6688

Report from ARLIS/NA+VRA Seattle 2016

Submitted by Sarah Osborne Bender, Visual Resources Curator, American University

As the recipient of the Caroline Backlund Professional Development Award for 2016, I am so grateful to my chapter. The award was particularly poignant this year with the death of Caroline just weeks before the conference in Seattle. I was fortunate to have met Caroline at a chapter meeting a few years back and was treated to entertaining stories of some of her adventurous travels.

This year was a joint conference year, bringing ARLIS/NA and VRA members together. The last time this happened was in Minneapolis in 2011. Both times I truly enjoyed the camaraderie and the expansiveness brought to sessions with both societies represented. Serving as the liaison from ARLIS/NA to VRA, and vice versa, this year’s conference illustrated to me the many ways in which we can work together between these joint conferences and generate productive and lasting collaborations.

The travel award was particularly helpful to me this year because my stay was extended by a couple of days in order to help lead ARLIS/NA’s first ever THATCamp. Taking place the day before official conference activities, THATCamp brought together close to 60 attendees from institutions around the world and a wide variety of backgrounds. Planning a THATCamp is a total blind leap; as a leader you try your best to generate enthusiasm and sense of community in the lead-up to the event, but it is up to the attendees to turn the day into something meaningful. If you have a room full of “I’m just here to listen” attendees, the whole thing falls apart. But we should have known better than to doubt ARLIS/NA and VRA members. Attendees proposed and lead 13 sessions and activities included a substantial workshop on web archiving, a creative “sensory mapping” activity, and what may be the seeds of a linked open data special interest group. Everyone in the room felt proud at the end of the day.

Diving into the conference, I attended sessions and meetings that had a substantial impact on the way I look at my work, my collections, and my career. I was one of many fans of the popular “Scope Drift: New Roles and Responsibilities in Visual Resources” session. It was a great early session and my handwritten notes are filled with stars (my own code to myself that says, “Hey! Be sure to look into this!!”) Kate Thornhill brought good energy to her story of being an embedded librarian in a photography class at Lesley University where she worked with students on things like data management and building their own creative commons license. Annie Solinger and Brian Shelburn from University of Massachusetts, Amherst, also shared ideas from their experience teaching a one-credit tech-based course for students who use images (which could really include all students, as far as I’m concerned.)

“Do It, Make It: Current Initiatives and Advice on Creating a Makerspace”, was more useful than I anticipated. Megan Lotts of Rutgers had fun stories of her experience teaching with Legos. Cynthia Frank (University of Maryland, College Park) discussed introducing architecture students to 3D printing, making herself the link between the class project and the library’s makerspace. Feedback from the faculty was positive. And Chris Strasbaugh, of Vanderbilt University, encouraged us to be assertive in partnering with vendors, manufacturers, local partners to get access to equipment we may not be able to afford on our own. I also loved his idea to use Scalar for makerspace documentation.

“Charmed, I’m Sure: Introducing New Users to Library and Audio Video Materials” presented achievable, even elegant, ideas for making the library an appealing choice for users. Amelia Nelson of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art talked about using Visual Thinking Strategies (something I’ve only heard about in museum educator circles) to jumpstart research. And Rhode Island School of Design’s Ellen Petraits shared a presentation of lovely signage inviting people into the library and towards resources- both print and people- who can help.

Along with my VRA counterpart, Rebecca Moss (University of Minnesota), I led the Digital Humanities SIG meeting. The meeting quickly took off with the membership clearly and enthusiastically letting us know what they want from the SIG. Suggestions included a Slack channel, a knowledge base, a SIG facilitated practicum. Most of all, there was deep agreement, even from society leadership in the room, that keeping the ARLIS/NA and VRA DH SIGs separate is inefficient and that it is worth exploring ways to bring us together. (You can see a bit more about this meeting in my recap posted on the ARLIS/NA DH SIG blog.

Lastly, but not least, I presented alongside Ian McDermott about Artstor’s first foray into crowdsourcing with their D. James Dee Archive, a project they call Arcades. The Dee Archive includes tens of thousands of unidentified photographs of artworks from New York spanning 1970s through 1990s. The effort invites the public to enter any information they can identify about the work (with a built-in Google reverse image search). I had introduced the tool to some students and faculty in the Art Department at American University, as well as other cultural heritage crowdsourcing projects. Our session gave attendees a chance to try Arcades live as well as to listen and take part in a discussion between me and Ian about the kind of decisions involved in the development of a crowdsourcing project, ways to enhance the experience for both the user and the collection host, and other ideas for crowd sourced work. The informal format of our session was a success and I feel that both the attendees and we, as presenters, benefitted from the exchange.

Every ARLIS/NA conference I attend results in a collection of meaningful insights that positively affect the way I work, as well as new connections to colleagues. I am thankful to be part of such a dedicated, creative, generous professional society. Again, I express my thanks to my fellow chapter members who helped me attend this year. I hope that they had the same quality of experience that I did.

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