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Special Collections in the Design Library

This guide identifies the rare books, artists books, archival slides, art, drawings, and other special materials held by the Design Library.

Design Library Exhibits

Learn more about current and upcoming exhibits at the Design Library on the Design Library Exhibits pageThis page includes information and documentation about previous exhibits.

Past Exhibitions

Spring 2022. Selections made from/about plants from the Design's Library's Special Collections.

Zines: ARTD 250 Final Projects
March-April 11, 2022. Final projects from ARTD 250 Print Media Digital Arts winter 2022. 

Participation and Contemporary Artists' Publications: In Art Historical Context
Fall 2021. Juxtaposing historic texts that celebrate individual artistic genius with contemporary works that encourage collective artmaking. 

Circa Surrealism: Foundations and Legacies in Print
Spring 2021. This exhibition provides a glimpse into the circuitous legacy of the Surrealists from 1930 to the recent past, including historical documents and contemporary artsts' books. 

VOTE 2020: Exploring the Issues through the Artists' Books Collection
Fall 2020. Featuring select artists' books that address current events and key issues at the center of the 2020 presidential election.

Poetry in Artists' Books
Winter 2019. This exhibit explores artists' books as a delivery mechanism for poetry. Examples include collaborations between artists and poets, work based off of well-known poems, and the artist-poet hybrid. With content ranging from serious issues (violence, family relationships, and war protests) to fun (cats and found fruit), the exhibition demonstrates many ways that artists' books allow exploration of topics, form, and meaning.

DeArmond MakerSpace at the Design Library
Fall 2018. Showcases items made in the Price Science Commons and Research Library's DeArmond MakerSpace. 

Treasures of Design: Selections from the Special Collections of the Design Library. Fall 2017. In celebration of the renaming of the School of Architecture & Allied Arts to the College of Design, the Design Library begins the academic year with a showcase of works from its special collections.

Thirty-six Views of Mt. Fuji: Classic Woodblock Prints by Hokusai
May-August 2017. Prints by Hokusai from a rare book in Design Library.

You Must Never Look Away From This
Winter 2017. This exhibit in the Design Library highlights artists' books that relate to themes in this year's common reading selection, Between the World and Meby Ta-Nehisi Coates. The books on view address race, identity, privilege, capitalism, education, diaspora, and family - as lived, studied, observed, and expressed by a variety of artists.

Architectural Models
Fall 2016. Models created by students of Marion Dean Ross. Some models are currently on display throughout the library.

Picnic Time! Food and Artists' Books
Summer 2016. A display of items about food in the Design Library collection. 

Curls, Cuts, Snags, and the Black Hole
March-June 2016. Featuring Design Library's artist's book which use hair. 

A Teahouse, a Wigwam, and the Sex Lives of Vegetables 
September 2015-February 2016. Featuring selections of Design Library holdings of artist's books, rare books, and student-made models.

A Teahouse, a Wigwam, and the Sex Lives of Vegetables
Fall 2015. On exhibit are eight intriguing artists’ books which showcase some of the creative and skillful approaches used in this form of art. Examples make use of a variety of materials and cover such diverse topics as conspiracies by rabbits, human rights, Chinese opera, and things about vegetables you never knew.

Constance Fowler: The Days in and near Old Salem
January-March 2015. From Design Library's collection, original wood engravings by Fowler for her 1940 UO thesis.

Carl Heilborn: Designs for Film
September-December 2014. Featuring original watercolors by set designer, Carl Heilborn, UO graduate.

Erich Mendelsohn: The Oregon Sketches
April-June 2014. Featuring original drawings in the Design Library collections by Erich Mendelsohn created when the famous architect lectured at the UO. 

Drawn to Design: Selections from the UO Architecture Student Drawings Collection*
January-March 2014. Featuring large-format historic UO architecture student drawings from the Design Library collections. *Exhibited at Knight Library

Selections from the Wasmuth Portfolio
January-March 2014. Featuring plates from Design Library's copy of the rare Frank Lloyd Wright's Ausgefuhte den Bauten.

Color: A Magic Power
April-June 2013. Featuring plates from Design Library's original edition of Josef Albers' Interaction of Color.

Marion Dean Ross: The Legacy of a Scholar*
January-April 2012. Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Ross endowment with models, writing, and rare books associated with scholar and benefactor M. D. Ross. *Exhibited at Knight Library.

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