The art in our collection includes items commonly found in special collections libraries, namely artists’ books. These include fine press editions, artists’ multiples and handcrafted pieces that celebrate the traditions of bookmaking and letterpress.
What may come as a surprise to visitors is the other types of artwork that is in our stacks. Examples of original drawings are found in individual’s personal papers, such as the pen-and-ink drawings by Harold Haydon and the working sketches by sculptor Marie Zoe Greene-Mercier. In larger archival collections, Leonard Baskin’s illustrations for a translation of Homer’s Iliad are held in the University of Chicago Press Records, and Ruth Vollmer’s Trenchant Sphere (1967) is part the Benton Foundation Records.
Some of the items displayed, such as the fine press editions artists’ books, are known and used by faculty and students for classes and research. Other works go relatively unnoticed or completely unseen. Art in the Stacks provides an opportunity to share this unexpected aspect of our holdings in The Special Collections Research Center.