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Bound to Art: Illustrated Books from the Edmund S. Muskie Archives and Special Collections Library

January 14-March 25, 2011

Curated by Katherine Stefko, Director of Archives & Special Collections Research Assistant, Amy Keneally ’10

The Edmund S. Muskie Archives and Special Collections Library holds an extensive collection of rare books, ranging from incunabula of the earliest days of printing to the revival of these techniques as seen in the finely printed and bound works of today’s flourishing book arts movement. Bound to Art: Illustrated Books from the Edmund S. Muskie Archives and Special Collections Library is the first ever exhibition of these holdings, presenting a selection of important illustrated books spanning the past 500 years. The exhibition explores the three-dimensional and multi-sensory ways in which images and text as presented in a book form can delight our eyes and inspire our minds. Bound to Art will be accompanied by a full-color, illustrated catalog.

The goal of the exhibition is to engage the Archives’ and the Museum’s primary audiences—Bates faculty, students and staff—with these illustrated books in new and dynamic ways.  Presenting a selection of the Archives’ fine illustrated books in a public exhibition space, the Museum of Art, will provide opportunities to learn and think about the works and to generally raise awareness about the availability of these important resources for individual and class study as well as more advanced research projects. Additionally, faculty from multiple disciplines, including Religion, Biology, Art and Visual Culture, and Physics, have contributed didactic labels for selected objects in the exhibition.


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