This Week 10/14/2019–10/19/2019

Here is what was on the agenda for this week:

  • International Student Workshop II
  • Introduction to LibAnswer and Libinsights
  • Exhibit Logistics Check-in Meeting with Supervisor
  • Meeting and Tour in the Libraries Technical Services Building
  • ALAO Conference
  • Pop-Up Exhibit for Día de los Muertos

I will only be discussing in detail the pop-up exhibit. If you are interested in hearing more about the Academic Library Association of Ohio 2019 conference, check out my overview here.

The day that we have been prepping for since early September finally arrived! We had our Día de los Muertos adjacent Pop-Up Exhibit in the Cartoon Library and Museum. The scope of the exhibit was pretty broad and consisted of items from our special collections, some of our newest acquisitions from SÕL-CON: The Brown and Black Comix Expo, and other comics and graphic novels currently in the collection. My job was to find items that fit under Immigration, Migration, and Mobility. The image below is a table featuring the many graphic novels I found in our collections related to the topic, including:

  • The Arrival by Shaun Tan
  • The Four Immigrants Manga: a Japanese Experience in San Francisco, 2904-1924 by Henry (Yoshitaka) Kiyama
  • Migra Mouse: Political Cartoons on Immigration by Lalo Alcaraz
  • Étrange by Jérôme Ruillier
  • Diary of a Reluctant Dreamer: Undocumented Vignettes from a Pre-American Life by Alberto Ledesma 
  • The Best We Could Do: An Illustrated Memoir by Thi Bui

The Immigration, Migration and Mobility theme also led me to pull many political cartoons and original art by Bill Schorr, Eric J. Garcia, Kate Salley Palmer, and many other who had very poignant commentaries on immigration in the United States. My supervisor was in charge of pulling and transporting the special collections items which included original Jose Guadalupe Posada broadsides. Overall, the exhibit was a great success. We had over 130 people come in and take a look around. I was especially excited to see people interested in the graphic novels I pulled as well as the material acquired from SÕL-CON. I was worried that people would not want to touch any of the material we left out for them, so I would often go around and handle the material, signalling that it is okay to touch this stuff. Whats the point of even having this material if no one can see it or touch it?

I was not tasked with any of the logistics of the exhibit this time, but next year, I might be heading the charge! Aside from stopping by the exhibit to see if they could use extra help, my partner and I were given the freedom to explore the other events happening for the larger Día de los Muertos celebration. We drank hot chocolate, ate tamales and pan de muerto, checked out the altar where people left items for their loved ones, and explored the gallery exhibits in the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum.

The planning and execution of this exhibit was helpful in a lot of ways. It taught me how to find material in our circulating and special collections, who most important people are when you need logistical support, and what the execution of a pop-up exhibit looks like from start to finish.  I have plenty of experience in programming and exhibit planning, my past experience has been on a much smaller scale. I was also able to watch how my supervisor interacted with patrons. As someone who is very shy, I was blown away with how willing my supervisor was to just start talking to people about what they were looking at. This event was also an opportunity to network with some of the faculty in the department, demonstrating to them what we have in our collections and ways in which they might incorporate these materials into their classes.

Now that this event is over we can focus on our other collaborative efforts. Stay tuned for what we do next!

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