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Library Visit – Rare Books at the National Gallery

Photos and write-up by Carol Abrams

Rare books at the National Gallery of Art-2015 (5)The rare book librarian at the National Gallery of Art shared some of his collection’s gems with members of the Washington Rare Book Group, who graciously included me in their visit. Thanks to librarian Yuri Long’s hospitality, we saw books handmade by artists, books designed by photographers such as Walker Evans, illustrations by Max Ernst, and more. Joan Miró illustrated one book we saw; the book was issued unbound as a portfolio with large-scale fold-outs. Miró was fascinated with literature, writers, and poets and illustrated 263 books, catalogs, and albums throughout his career according to the Park West Gallery in Michigan.

 

Rare books at the National Gallery of Art-2015 (9)The National Gallery of Art Library’s rare book collection includes roughly 800 artist’s books.  The collection includes a copy of Moby Dick; Or, the Whale with 100 wood engravings by Barry Moser, each of which was signed by the artist. Rare book librarian Yuri Long is fond of the books that are homages to other artists, such as Dégas in Rome by Charles Hobson. Hobson writes in his author’s note that he has written the diary he imagines Dégas would have written during his time in Rome. Hobson write, “I sat at a table in the loggia of the Villa Farnesina in front of the Raphael painting of Galatea and sketched it from the same distance and perspective Dégas did 150 years earlier.” The book includes page-edge designs from an actual Dégas sketchbook. This book is part of the Gallery’s collection of modern and contemporary art books, many of which are handmade by artists in small editions. Another is Hamlet told in multi-colored wood blocks.

Rare books at the National Gallery of Art-2015 (2)Visits to the collection are available by appointment. The rare book librarian at the National Gallery of Art can be reached at y-long@nga.gov

Carol Abrams is earning her MIS degree at the University of Tennessee.

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Event Recap: 2015 DC/SLA Kickoff Party

IMG_0488By Amber Paranick

This past Wednesday evening, current and prospective DC/SLA members attended a 2015 Kickoff Party held at the DC Public Library’s Cleveland Park branch location.

Chapter President Deena Adelman got the discussion started by introducing the Board of Directors. Adhering to this year’s theme of ‘Reflective Momentum’ and in preparation for the 75th Jubilee, Deena invited members to share memories and reflections on experiences with DC/SLA.  See members’ reflections here and submit your own reflection here.  Deena also emphasized the importance of volunteering with DC/SLA.

Processed with VSCOcam with lv03 preset Next up, Karen Reczek gave us a brief and helpful introduction to the organization in her talk: SLA 101. She wanted us to keep in mind that SLA is uniquely structured in such a way that its members come first. And just in case you missed the kickoff,  Layla Heimlich, Program Director reminded us that there’s much more excitement to be had in 2015 and gave us a rundown of what’s coming down the pike. Plans for a Jubilee Gala, a museum scavenger hunt, and a DC/SLA Past Presidents’ TED Talk Favorites presentation are all in the works.  Speaking of exciting events, Sharon Lenius, overseer of the DC/SLA 75th Anniversary Committee, caught us up on what events are taking place to celebrate the occasion.  By becoming a Jubilee VIP, SLA members will support DC/SLA programming and be invited to attend the Jubilee Gala. Read about more benefits here.  DC/SLA Leadership Summit Stipend Award recipient Kelly Knight gave us a run-down of the summit in Baltimore.  Her words of advice when attending professional SLA events: “Get out and be social!”

The main takeaway from the night was to get involved in the organization. We’ve become a dynamic and very active chapter of SLA and we’ve only been able to do this through our members and their volunteer efforts. The more we get involved, the more we will reap all the benefits of what the DC/SLA has to offer as an individual and the stronger we can grow as a chapter.

Hope to see you at the next event!Processed with VSCOcam with t1 preset

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Event Recap: 2015 Leadership Summit

By Kelly Knight

SummitBaltimoreI arrived in Baltimore by train on a wonderful snowy afternoon just in time to get settled and attend the first-timers happy hour. Afterward, I joined a dine-around at a tavern in Fells Point (where I ate crab cakes, of course!). I was very welcomed at these events and it helped me feel more comfortable going into a new conference as a student.

The next morning began with a keynote by Steve Denning on radical management which opened up the summit to reflecting on what leadership means to us and what qualities of leadership we possess. Leadership skills are something I need to work on, and I know volunteering with SLA is a great place to start practicing.

In the best practices session, I learned strategies for financing events through sponsorships that chapters (or divisions) host. Maintaining a relationship with sponsors is critical, just as it is in any professional setting. From a negotiation standpoint, it’s also important to remember that the sponsor also receives value from attending the event. If you work together, the event can be a win-win.

One of my favorite sessions was: Unit Ideas Live! where we discussed in groups ideas that SLA could implement to increase value to members. There are toolkits online and an “Adopt-a-Webinar” program that were implemented as a result of feedback from membership. So if you have any ideas, let SLA know!

The final session of the day was called “Moving SLA Forward” where President Jill Strand talked about “leaning into the curve” as a way for us continue moving during changes within the organization. As you may know, Jill is the new SLA president, and two Interim Executives were recruited to help with SLA’s strategic planning. Jill went over a timeline of recruiting the Interim Executives and encouraged openness, so if you have any questions or concerns, she wants you to contact you via e-mail.

On the second day, we met bright and early at 8am to work on strategic planning with Rebecca Jones. She played us a video called “Shift Happens,” which included statements such as: “If Facebook were a country, it would be the second largest in the world” and “Today the number of text messages sent every day is double the population of the planet.” The point was to challenge assumptions and re-frame our current perspectives while planning ahead and accepting change.

After division, cabinet, and joint meetings, our closing speaker James Calvin discussed the leadership theory of “Outreach Empowerment.” He quoted Adam Grant in saying, “Givers are more likely to succeed.”

If you’re interested in learning more about the leadership summit, you can check out the #SLATalk recap on Twitter or view the recording of the Recap Webinar with Jill Strand, John DiGilio and Bill Fisher.

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Event Recap: 75th Birthday Dine Around at Chevy’s Pentagon City

Birthday girl Sharon Lenius, left.

Birthday girl Sharon Lenius, left.

By Jill Lynch

On a cold day in early February (and aren’t they all this year) a bunch of us gathered at Chevy’s Mexican Grill in Pentagon City for the celebration of Sharon Lenius’ 75th birthday, which coincides so nicely with the DC/SLA 75th year Jubilee.

Former President George Washington tends to be selective on which DC/SLA events he attends, and he made sure not to miss this dine around.  Most of us were motivated to wear festive birthday hats since there was a free Happy Hour drink involved in donning the pointed hats.

Half starving, we networked with our margaritas, beer and wine before menus were passed around and we started placing our orders for vegetable fajitas, shrimp tacos and smothered burritos.

Nancy Minter - former DC/SLA President talking with Anne  Caputo, former SLA President

Nancy Minter – former DC/SLA President talking with Anne Caputo, former SLA President

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Event Recap – DC/SLA Board Retreat

Earlier in the month, the DC/SLA board gathered for its annual retreat. The meeting serves as a way to get all new board members on the same page as they begin to plan for the year ahead.DCSLA Board Retreat 2015 2

This year’s retreat focused on the 75th Jubilee celebration in 2015.

Among tentative program plans this year are a Jubilee Gala, a museum scavenger hunt, and a DC/SLA Past Presidents’ TED Talk Favorites presentation.

The chapter’s new president, Deena Adelman, presented her theme for this year: Reflective Momentum. She kicked off this year’s theme with a blog post; check out her reflections on Volunteering, Momentum, and Legacy. Board members will also be sharing their reflections on how their membership in SLA and DC/SLA has impacted their lives and careers. Deena asks all members of the chapter to share their reflections – see the Share Your Reflections post for ideas.

You can get a chance to meet the board and learn more about 75th Jubilee plans at the upcoming 2015 DC/SLA Kickoff Event on February 11th at Cleveland Park Library.

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Become a Jubilee VIP

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Photos on flickr

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