Mason Libraries are here for YOU

Are you taking advantage of the Mason Libraries’ numerous resources and activities? Don’t forget:

Need a break from studying and research? Like to read? Consider joining the Mason Libraries Book Club, or attending one of our upcoming special events:

  • Musical Rarities and Curiosities, Friday, November 3, 2pm Special Collections Research Center (Fenwick Library, Room 2400): Join Steven Gerber, Music Librarian, for an informal inspection of a dozen musical rarities acquired for Special Collections in the last year or two. These range from a 19th-century psalm setting in manuscript by Francesco Basili and costume designs for opera characters to the printed program of an 1850 Jenny Lind concert, a leaf from a medieval choir book, and limited-edition songs from Irving Berlin’s musical Top Hat.
  • Advances in Science 1586-1999: Standing on the Shoulders of Giants, Exhibition Reception, Tuesday, November 7, 3pm – 5pm, Special Collections Research Center (Fenwick Library, Room 2400): Visit SCRC to hear remarks about our current exhibit and enjoy refreshments generously provided by Argo Tea Café.
  • Music in the Lobby: Up Close + Classical, Wednesday, November 15, 1pm – 1:45pm: Join us in the Fenwick Lobby to hear the Mason Student Strings group perform selections by Bach and Dvorak. Refreshments generously provided by Argo Tea Café.
  • Mason Author Series: Patricia Donahue, Thursday, November 16, 3pm – 4:30pm, Fenwick Main Reading Room: Communities are the sum of myriad types of participation—positive, negative, formal, informal, direct, and indirect. Join us for a discussion with Patricia Donahue on her recent book, Participation, Community, and Public Policy in a Virginia Suburb, which challenges conventional wisdom about participation in modern American communities through the story of Northern Virginia’s Pimmit Hills.

Check out the Libraries calendar for more workshops and happenings, and visit our website to learn more about our resources and services!

Advances in Science Exhibit

Bioscience. Space Exploration. Engineering. Information Technology. These are but a few of the rapidly advancing fields of science which affect our modern lives. Achievements in these disciplines were built – and continue to build – upon discoveries made by preceding generations of scientists. As Sir Issac Newton famously wrote, “If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.”

The exhibit Advances in Science 1586-1999: Standing on the Shoulders of Giants explores the layered nature of scientific research, in which new knowledge is gained over the framework of each new discovery. In this exhibit, we see how the scientific method, first advocated by Sir Francis Bacon, informed the methodology of naturalist, Charles Darwin and later, the scientists who discovered DNA, Watson and Crick. In the field of applied mathematics, the theories espoused by Euclid during the 3rd Century, B.C. created a system of mathematical thinking that would not be expanded until the 19th century. And even as applied mathematics advances and paradigms shift, the work of Euclid remains relevant.

This exhibition explores the evolution of scientific thought through rare books, archival documents, and photographs. It examines two main branches of science: the life sciences and applied mathematics. Featuring the works of Euclid, Bacon, Spallanzani, Pasteur, Linnaeus, and Darwin, Advances in Science 1586-1999: Standing on the Shoulders of Giants spans the period between the formulation of the scientific method to the construction of the International Space Station. A reception will be held on November 7, 3-5 p.m., Special Collections Research Center, 2400 Fenwick Library. Robinson Professor, Dr. James Trefil, is the guest speaker.

For more information, please contact Rebecca Bramlett, rbramlet@gmu.edu, 703-933-2058.

 

Reception & Curator’s Talk Tonight!

Our Comics, Ourselves is officially underway! Join us as we host artists, writers, comics shop owners, and the exhibition’s curators throughout the month of September and early October. All are welcome to join us this evening for:

Curator’s Talk, Opening Reception, and Print Shop Jam
Friday, September 14, 6:00pm
Fenwick Library Main Reading Room / Mason School of Art

Jan Descartes (she/her) and Monica McKelvey Johnson (she/her) will give a curator’s talk on the latest iteration of the traveling exhibition, Our Comics, Ourselves, which originated at Interference Archive in Brooklyn, NY. Focusing on themes of authorship and identity, they will talk about the major works on view, and discuss the process of organizing Our Comics, Ourselves through their method of feminist curating. The presentation will be followed by an open discussion.

Event to be followed by an opening reception and comics and printmaking jam at the Mason School of Art, beginning at 7:30pm.

A sign language interpreter will be present at this event.

This presentation is part of Our Comics, Ourselves: Identity, Expression, and Representation in Comic Art, on display now through October 6 at Fenwick Gallery. Visit http://fenwickgallery.gmu.edu/exhibits/our-comics-ourselves/ for more details.

About the curators: Jan Descartes is a Brooklyn-based artist, educator and curator. She is a graduate of Syracuse University (BA), Carnegie Melon University (MFA) and anticipated graduate of CUNY Graduate Center, with a degree focus on Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies (MLS). She currently co-curates the Our Comics, Ourselves exhibition with Monica McKelvey Johnson, which focuses on identity and representation. Through her artistic, academic and professional life, art and accessibility has been a major theme, culminating in her current thesis regarding trauma and memory in public aesthetic spaces. Jan is co-creator and artist for the webcomic Heartland Comic, where personal memoir and identity politics meet comix. She is currently involved with planning/organizing outreach projects in NYC, where she hopes to facilitate DIY comic-making as an accessible means to explore personal experience and resistance in the everyday. She also lives with a sweet dog and an angry cat.

Monica McKelvey Johnson is a comic artist, writer, and curator living in Brooklyn. She is a graduate of San Francisco State University (BA), and CUNY Hunter College’s Integrated Media Arts Program (MFA). She authored the web comic The Adventures of Dorrit Little, a story about the average student debtor in the United States today, and founded the student debtor support group, EDU Debtors Union. She writes about comics from an intersectional feminist perspective for The Rumpus and The Comics Journal, and has co-organized several exhibitions at Interference Archive—including Our Comics, Ourselves,Take Back the Fight: Resisting Sexual Violence from the Ground Up, and an upcoming exhibition focusing on Deaf culture. She is a practitioner of “feminist curation,” a methodology she continues to develop with Jan Descartes.

New Exhibition: Our Comics, Ourselves

Fenwick Gallery is pleased to host Our Comics, Ourselves, an exhibition highlighting themes of identity, expression, and representation in comic books and graphic novels. The exhibition runs August 21, 2017 through October 6, 2017, with an opening reception and curator’s talk on Friday, September 15.

Our Comics, Ourselves features comic books, graphic novels, DIY comics, and various comics paraphernalia primarily from the United States, from 1945 to present. The works range from autobiographical to sheer fantasy, and explore feminism, abortion, racism, cultural identity, social activism, labor unions, veterans of war, sexual abuse, student debt, immigration, public health, civil rights, gender and sexual identity, and more. Our Comics, Ourselves presents the graphic stories that describe the complexity and diversity of our collective experience, and examines the social and historical contexts within which they emerged.

Our Comics, Ourselves is on display in Fenwick Gallery and the Special Collections Research Center in Fenwick Library. In conjunction with this exhibition, Fenwick Library and various Mason departments Mason are hosting a series of presentations, workshops, and readings to further the discussion about the exhibition and its associated themes. More information will be available on the Fenwick Gallery website as events are scheduled.

This exhibition is organized and made possible by Jan Descartes and Monica McKelvey Johnson of Interference Archive in NYC, and supported by many Mason faculty partners and departments, including Stephanie Grimm, Art and Art History Librarian, University Libraries; Christopher Kardambikis, Assistant Professor of Printmaking, School of Art; Angela Hattery, Professor and Director, Women & Gender Studies; Mika’il Petin, Professor, African and African American Studies.