Special Collections

Posts by Jenny Hodge

50 Features of Special Collections: The Gary Snyder Papers

March 3rd, 2017 by Jenny Hodge

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Professor Gary S. Snyder (1930-   ) renowned poet, essayist, translator, Zen Buddhist, environmentalist continues to make an indelible mark on late-twentieth and twenty-first century thought. He is considered one of the most significant environmental writers and a central figure in environmental activism.

The Gary Snyder Papers, (D-050) document the personal and professional activities of Gary Snyder.  He has written more than twenty books of poetry and prose including his forty-year work, Mountains and Rivers Without End and Turtle Island for which he won the 1975 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. The collection spans the years 1910-2009 (1945-2002 bulk) and continues to grow. Drafts as well as final versions of poems and prose pieces are found in the collection along with correspondence, recordings of poetry readings and interviews, subject files, manuscripts and publications by other authors, serials, ephemera, and memorabilia.  The collection draws the most national and international visitors to Special Collections.  It has led to hundreds of queries for information, research and publication use.  Faculty, students, and other researchers find an extensive collection of over 274.8 linear feet to explore in Gary Snyder’s personal journals, writings, correspondence, essays, and publications, and ephemera.

Penciled note on the back by Gary Snyder reads, “My last of the original ‘Smokey the Bear’ run. 18.III.95, better protect it!”

The Gary Snyder Papers was cataloged and a  finding aid created with the support from a  2002/03  U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services, Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant administered by the California State Librarian.

Further information about the collection may be found on the Online Archive of California, including a detailed inventory of the collection.

Gary Snyder became a faculty member in the Department of English at the University of California, Davis in 1986. He was instrumental in founding the “Nature and Culture” program (1993), an undergraduate academic major for students of society and the environment. He was also active in establishing “The Art of the Wild” (1992), an annual conference on wilderness and creative writing. The Academic Senate selected Snyder as the 2000 Faculty Research Lecturer, the University of California, Davis’ highest faculty peer honor. He retired in 2002. Recognition of Snyder’s achievements includes the 1975 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for his book Turtle Island, his appointment to the California Arts Council (1975-1979), and his induction into both the American Academy of Arts and Letters (1987) and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (1993). After his long poem cycle and forty-year work, Mountains and Rivers Without End, was published, he was presented with the 1997 Bollingen Prize for Poetry.

PS 3569. N88 M62

PS 3569. N88

In conferring the award, the judges observed,

Gary Snyder through a long and distinguished career has been doing what he refers to in one poem as ‘the real work.’ ‘The real work’ refers to writing poetry, an unprecedented kind of poetry, in which the most adventurous technique is put at the service of the great themes of nature and love. He has brought together the physical life and the inward life of the spirit to write poetry as solid and yet as constantly changing as the mountains and rivers of his American — and — universal landscape.

Snyder received the Lila Wallace Reader’s Digest Grant in 1998. Also in 1998, he was honored with the Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai (Society for the Propagation of Buddhism) award for his outstanding contributions in linking Zen thought and respect for the natural world across a lifelong body of poetry and prose. In 2001, he was awarded the California State Library Gold Medal for Excellence in the Humanities and Science.

A detailed biography of Gary Snyder can be found on the Online Archive of California.

A research project written by John Sherlock entitled Gary Snyder; a bibliography of works by and about Gary Snyder may be found at:

https://www.library.ucdavis.edu/dept/specol/researchprojects/

For further information on the collection contact Special Collections.

50 Features of Special Collections: Interaction of Color by Josef Albers

January 20th, 2017 by Jenny Hodge

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Frequently requested by Design and Art classes, Josef Albers’ Interaction of Color is an oft-used instruction piece held in Special Collections and is this week’s highlight for our 50 Features of Special Collections series.
Color is not static. It is constantly in flux due to the perceptions and context that surround its presentation:

The book “Interaction of Color” is a record of an experimental way of studying color and of teaching color. In visual perception a color is almost never seen as it really is–as it physically is. This fact makes color the most relative medium in art. In order to use color effectively it is necessary to recognize that color deceives continually. To this end, the beginning is not a study of color systems. (1)

Josef Albers’ Interaction of Color is a large oversized portofolio, which includes introductions to over 20 color exercises, plates of sample studies and commentary on each plate. The initial text explains the exercise and presents an illustration of the way color was investigated. The plates are done within each exercise and present subtle relationships and presentations of color. The 80 folders of sample study plates visualize the ideas presented in each exercise. They reproduce the illusions and perceptions created by color interactions. These sample studies are the highlight of the book as they offer hands-on practice in the art of seeing. The point of the book is not to provide an answer to what color is but to provide a framework to aid in the study of color.

Below are two samples for Exercise IV- 1 Color looks Like 2

Plate IV-1 (b) yellow and blue flap down

Note the color of the square on the right and that it is actually equal to the square on the left.

Plate IV-1 (b) yellow and blue flap up

 

Plate IV-4 (b)

Note that the inner smaller violets are in fact alike as the ends of the same rectangle.

Plate IV-4 (b)

In 2013 for the 50th anniversary, a digital version was created as an App for the iPad. More information on Josef Albers and his work can be found on the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation website.

Works consulted:

  1. Albers, Josef. Interaction of Color. New Haven: Yale UP, 1963. Print.

 

Happy Birthday Mark Twain

November 30th, 2016 by Jenny Hodge
Samuel Clemens

Samuel Clemens

Happy Halloween!

October 31st, 2016 by Jenny Hodge

From the Heroes and Villains in Special Collections have a ghoulishly delightful Halloween!

Heroes and Villians

Heroes and Villians

50 Features of Special Collections: Will of Ximenes Petri, Tudela, Spain, 1287 September 13.

October 7th, 2016 by Jenny Hodge
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This week’s feature highlights a 1287 A.D. Will of Ximenes (“Eximinus”) Petri, conveying to the Veruela Monastery (“Monasterio Berolensi”) his vineyards and buildings in Tudela, and detailing the boundaries of the property. According to the Will the donation was for the benefit of the souls of his father, mother and himself. Besides the original manuscript written in Latin there is also a typed transcription, photocopy and maps of the Tudela and the Kingdom of Navarre. The Veruela Abbey or Monastery was founded in 1146 by Pedro de Atarés and is a Cistercian Abbey. The monastery had a major role in the development of viticulture and wineries in the area.

The Cistercian monastery of Veruela, is still in existence and is located at the foot of Moncayo, between the regions of Borja and Tarazona and Moncayo. There you can also visit the Museo del Vino del Campo de Borja and learn about the regions cultivation of vines, production and aging of wines as well as view the tools and machinery used during the process.
Will of Ximenes Petri

Will of Ximenes Petri

Stop by Special Collections if you are interested in learning more about our holdings in viticulture and enology.

50 Features of Special Collections: Direction of the Road, Artist’s books

September 30th, 2016 by Jenny Hodge
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This week we are highlighting one of our artists’ books Direction of the Road by Ursula K. Le Guin. The story is narrated by an oak tree on the side of the road. As someone approaches the tree it grows in size and as the viewer walks away the tree diminishes in size. As time passes, modes of transport and traffic increase forcing the tree to work extra hard to grow and shrink in quick succession.

The story by Ursula K. Le Guin was published in 1974, however, we are highlighting an artists’ book published in 2007 by Foolscap Press.  The story is printed on linen paper with occasional pressed leaves which makes a sort of rustling sound as you turn the pages. The book is presented in a portfolio box with an original woodcut illustration and a mirror made of plastic tubing to view the image.

“The art on this portfolio box is an original woodcut by Aaron Johnson. It is done in a form called anamorphic art … Aaron Johnson’s woodcut … casts the viewer into an active role in relation to the art and, most important for the story, it allows the image freedom of movement. The image may be viewed by removing the mirrored cylinder from its elastic stays and standing it on end within the printed circle on the woodcut. The “corrected” image can then be seen reflected in the mirror. The woodcut, handprinted by Aaron Johnson at Foolscap Press, is limited to 150 copies, signed by the artist.”–Colophon to portfolio box.

The beauty of an artists’ book is that not only is the story a work of art but also the form the book is presented in. Upon approaching the portfolio the reader becomes part of the story watching as the tree grows and then shrinks as the reader retreats. This presentation mirrors the idea of the story and further encourages the reader to reflect on differences in perception.

dor-blog

For more artists’ books in Special Collections look for the Fine Press and Book Arts Collection.

 

50 Features of Special Collections: Shakespeare’s 2nd Folio

July 29th, 2016 by Jenny Hodge
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In 1958, the University of California acquired the extensive personal library of C.K. (Charles Kay) Ogden, British linguist and philosopher. The University divided the library among the extant campuses: Berkeley, UCLA, Davis, Santa Barbara, and Riverside. The Davis library’s portion was nearly 10,000 volumes.

A Second Folio, the second edition of Shakespeare’s works printed in 1632, was part of the C.K. Ogden library. Second Folio is the term applied to the 1632 edition of the collected plays of William Shakespeare, following upon the First Folio of 1623. There are almost 1,700 changes from the First Folio. When the time came to place it, Berkeley and UCLA both said that it duplicated their holdings. So, the placement fell to Davis, Santa Barbara, and Riverside. Instead of making the placement based on the flipping of a coin, a time-honored ritual, the University Librarians decided to base the placement on the outcome of the 1958 World Series.

In 1958, the American League was represented by the New York Yankees, the National League by the Milwaukee Braves. The same teams had played the 1957 series, with Milwaukee winning in seven games. According to former University Librarian J.R. Blanchard’s Reminiscences, “Davis was fortunate in drawing the New York Yankees, who knocked in the winning run of the 1958 baseball series, which also meant the Second Folio was pitched out to the Davis campus.”

This copy has the ownership signature of Henry Bradshaw. His brother John Bradshaw was president of the court that beheaded King Charles I.

Shakespeare's 2nd folio

 

50 Features of Special Collections: Cuneiform Tablet

July 8th, 2016 by Jenny Hodge
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The Sumerian Clay Tablet was acquired by the rare book collection in 1966, purchased in 1962 from Dawson’s Book Shop in Los Angeles. The tablet is from Sumeria, modern day southern Iraq, circa 1974 BC/BCE (short chronology). The cuneiform inscription is an administrative text written during the Third Dynasty of Ur at Umma, which was at the center of a large agricultural district in southern Mesopotamia. The text orders the hiring of persons to perform agricultural work on the fields belonging to the temple of Shara, the chief god of Umma.

Not only is the Sumerian tablet the oldest item held in Special Collections, but it is also a source of interest and research on the UC Davis campus. In 1976 Professor R. David Freedman of the Religious Studies Department provided a detailed translation of the 19 lines of cuneiform found on the tablet as well as the seal impression which reads, “Mese, the scribe, son of Dada”.[1]

In 2003 the Sumerian tablet was examined by undergraduate history major Ellen Joyce under the mentor-ship of Professor Stylianos Spyridakis. Working with Special Collections and the Geology Lab on campus Ms. Joyce was able to weigh, photograph and examine with a stereo microscope the tablet as part of her research project through the MURALS program.[2]

The Sumerian tablet is a staple when presenting Special Collections materials to classes on the history of the book and how ideas are recorded. It is also a visitor favorite when brought out to be displayed for groups and patrons. The tablet can be viewed in the Special Collections Reading Room from 10-5, Monday thru Friday.

3 sides covered with cuneiform inscriptions, 1 narrow side and both ends blank. 7.7 x 5 x 2 cm.

3 sides covered with cuneiform inscriptions, 1 narrow side and both ends blank. 7.7 x 5 x 2 cm.

[1] Information Sheet kept with tablet in Special Collections, University Library, UC Davis. PJ4071 .S9

[2] Teng, Santani. “Out of the Past.” The California Aggie 9 Feb. 2003: Print.

Happy 50th Birthday Special Collections!

July 1st, 2016 by Jenny Hodge

50 for our 50th icon2

 

We are excited to celebrate 50 years of Special Collections in the University Library!

“On July 1, 1966 the Department of Special Collections opened its door for service to the public at 201 Library. As announced in the January 21 issue of CUD, Donald Kunitz has been appointed Head of the Department.” From the July 8, 1966 issue of the Library newsletter titled, CUD.

As part of our celebration we will be highlighting 50 features of Special Collections. Each week we will present a unique feature adding up to 50. Stay tuned for our first post in this series!

 

 

Birthday celebration, undated.

Birthday celebration, undated. Image from the Eastman’s Originals Collection.

 

Gerome says “Cheers” to Davis Beer Week

August 14th, 2015 by Jenny Hodge

Gerome is brewing up interest in beer! This weekend marks the end of Davis Beer Week, where the city celebrates and encourages our regions craft beer culture. In honor of this spirit Gerome is highlighting a book from the A.W. Noling Hurty-Peck Collection of Beverage Literature: Brew in your Stew!: Recipes and adventures in the ancient, honorable and all-but-lost art of cooking with beer! published by the National Brewing Company in 1948. While beer is an excellent accompaniment with food it can also be in your food. This wonderful book offers a series of unusual recipes involving beer.

Noling TX726.3 B74 1948

Noling TX726.3 B74 1948

If you have any interest in making Curried Beef with Beer or Beer Souffle then this is the book for you, come check it out! Here’s one unusual recipe perfect for a hot summer day:

 Iced Beer Soup

  • ¾ cup Pumpernickel Crumbs
  • 2 tsps. Sugar
  • 1/8 tsp. Cinnamon
  • ¾ tsp. Lemon rind (grated)
  • 1 ½ cups White Wine
  • 2 tsps. Lemon juice
  • 3 cups National Premium Beer [pale dry beer]

Combine in a large cocktail shaker the pumpernickel crumbs, sugar, cinnamon, rind, lemon juice, beer, wine and 1 ½ cups of water. Shake vigorously and chill thoroughly. Shake again just before serving. Serve in bouillon cups.