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Games: Focusing on artistic and cultural value

Always working to meet faculty and student needs, VCU Libraries collects video games that have significant artistic and cultural value to meet the growing interest of students and faculty in the fields of animation, multimedia, digital worlds and gaming. The impetus of the collection, which started with 11 games, came from a faculty request to add both board and digital games to support a course.

The early collection (2014) features games across various platforms, and additional new releases are expected to be added soon. The games in the collection include critically acclaimed titles such as “Journey,” “Flower,” “The Last of Us,” “Shadow of the Colossus,” “Katamari Damacy,” “BioShock” and “Child of Eden.”

In 2015–16, the libraries began to collect games only available as downloads — important for representation of smaller, independent game developers. “Never Alone” and “Firewatch” are two significant titles. Also new is an “Alienware” gaming PC. This super powerful computer is located in The Workshop. A diverse collection of a dozen games includes “Papers Please” and “That Dragon Cancer.” These works are catalogued and they appear in library records, only for in-house use. This is significant because many libraries avoid downloads, which limits the collection parameters, or they don’t catalog games and instead rely on a finding aid. VCU Libraries catalogers developed creative, flexible workflows to manage these new-age materials.

“There’s a great interest in video games and virtual worlds in the School of the Arts and across the campus,” said Arts Collections Librarian Emily Davis Winthrop. “Gaming is emerging as a key area of research. We hope that this collection will support the growing research interests of our patrons and provide inspiration for the many creative endeavors occurring across campus.”

“We are purchasing games for research, teaching and learning — not necessarily for entertainment,” Davis Winthrop said. “We’re looking for games that have certain aesthetics, that are important to the history of video games and that have significant artistic direction, unique narrative or cerebral gameplay.”

ABOUT THE GAMING ROOM

The library’s Innovative Media department provides hardware support for the gaming collection and game developers in a dedicated gaming and group viewing room in The Workshop. Six video game consoles — Sony’s PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 2; Microsoft’s Xbox One and Xbox 360 and the Nintendo Wii U — provide users with the means to explore a wide range of game worlds. For computer-based games, the room is equipped with a high-end Alienware Area 51 gaming PC with gaming keyboard and mouse. Games and videos are displayed on a 47-inch, high-definition, 3D-capable LED monitor, and sound is supported by an LG wi-fi streaming sound bar with wireless subwoofer. Users reserve time in the room through an online scheduling system, checkout games and components at the information desk and seek help from knowledgeable staff about hardware, software and game play.

Orlando: Women’s Writing in the British Isles

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Advancing our understanding of the history and present of women’s contributions to the literary, cultural and political life of Great Britain, VCU Libraries provides access to the landmark database, Orlando:  Women’s Writing in the British Isles from the Beginnings to the Present. Orlando exemplifies digital humanities’ efforts to broaden access to little known or studied texts, provide historical and cultural context for authors and their works and inspire transformative ways of reading and understanding women’s literary engagement with their readers and the world through writing. Created at Cambridge University, Orlando is designed with a “unique structure and searchability,” encouraging researchers “to examine its information and critical comment in a wide range of configurations and to re-form this in new and creative ways. Orlando is open to the serendipities of productive browsing,” and fosters in-depth research through cultural, biographical, and textual discovery. More than 1,300 writers are included, and approximately 30,000 items are available for discovery–a growing list of authors and texts. Orlando will greatly enhance teaching and research at VCU, and foster a dynamic and innovative reading experience.

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By Kevin Farley, humanities collections librarian

Image:  “A Woman Seated at an Organ (or Writing Desk),” Yale University Art Gallery, public domain.

Music Online: Audio and video music reference

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Music Online is the best place for music lovers to get access to more than 7 million tracks from all over the world. From bluegrass to indie, Music Online makes all genres of music available for users everywhere.

Users can browse through various people, titles and instruments to find everything that they may be looking for. It contains notable works from artists such as Etta James and Jean-Philippe Rameau to stream through.

The database provides users with information on particular tracks, including the release date, catalog number and duration. Music Online also includes the appropriate citation for various formats.

With more than 1,000 videos and 20,000 books and documents to browse through, everyone’s music-related inquires can be answered right in one spot.

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By Katlyn Pierre, public relations intern. For more information about this resource or others

Image: Creative Commons

Berg Fashion Library: World fashion index

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Fashion lovers everywhere can be in-tune with fashion statements throughout history with the Berg Fashion Library.

The resource provides integrated text and image content from the 1600s to today in the form of e-books, reference works and more. It provides in-depth information on various bodies, garments and styles of fashion. The database also allows users to be matched with references and articles.

Browse through various dress, individuals and textiles throughout history. Berg Fashion Library allows users to get matched with scholarly fashion articles on everything from “Afro Hairstyle” to “The Fabric of Fabrication.” Get lost in the world of silks and calico while browsing through the site. Whether one’s interest is new world or old school, Berg has options. Discover how Tibet influences fashion in  “Archaeological Evidence: Tibet” or turn up hundreds of hits on Christian Dior.

Berg Fashion Library allows users to explore by time and place. Search for fashion from Oceania to Central America. There are articles about some of the iconic fashion items in the world from the sari to the kimono.

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By Katlyn Pierre, public relations intern. For more information about this resource or others

Image: Berg Fashion Library

British Periodicals: Hundreds of 17th-20th century titles

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VCU Libraries expanded its British Periodicals series with the acquisition of British Periodicals I and III. This series consists of facsimile page images and searchable text for nearly 500 periodicals published between the 17th and 20th centuries. Topics covered include politics, science, history, literary and creative arts, archaeology and popular culture.

British Periodicals I is the foundation of the series, some 160 journals that comprised the Early British Periodicals microfilm collection. This collection covers topics such as politics, science, history, literary and creative arts, archaeology and popular culture. Titles in this series include the Athenaeum, the Scottish Review and the London Journal.

British Periodicals III extends the scope of the series into the first half of the 20th century. This collection contains illustrated periodicals known as the “Great Eight” in British publishing. These popular periodicals covered news, art, photography and literature of the era. Titles in this series include Britannia and Eve, The Sketch, and The Tatler. Images are in full color when present in the original.

These additions join British Periodicals II, a collection dedicated to the arts, in VCU Libraries electronic resources. Material from these collections is available to download either as PDFs or JPEG images.

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By Emily Davis Winthrop, arts collections librarian

Image: Graphic The Tatler; Jul 9, 1930; 117, 1515; British Periodicals pg. 75

Collections Profile: Kevin Farley

Kevin FarleyCollection librarians advise on acquisitions and materials to support teaching and research as well as new course and degree development.
Humanities Collections Librarian Kevin Farley serves the VCU Department of Music.

Schools and Departments Served: African-American Studies, English, History, World Studies (including Philosophy, Religious Studies, and world languages), MATX, Music

Expertise/education:

  • Ph.D., English, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
  • MLS, Library Science, UNC-Chapel Hill
  • MA, English, Kent State University
  • BA, English, Old Dominion University

Areas of Interest

  • The future of humanities publishing
  • Cultural theory
  • Digital Humanities
  • Shakespeare
  • World literature and translation studies
  • Poetry and poetics
  • Film studies and experimental film
  • Music history

What do you like most about what you do?

Collections are at the forefront of tremendous changes underway in academic libraries, reflecting the transformations taking place in how disciplines are taught, studied and practiced. This is challenging but also very exciting, and with the increasing role of digital collections, it’s possible to see researchers find connections that are now often more visible than ever before. The variety of ways of thinking about oneself and the world that is the foundation of doing the humanities has been my lifelong fascination. Creation in the humanities is especially vibrant at VCU. Contemporary humanities are diverse, inclusive and internationalist in thinking and approach, and to be part of that is fulfilling both professionally and personally.

What currently has your attention?

At work, the shift into digital environments for media access, and ways to provide dynamic and wide-ranging streaming access to the VCU community. At home, the intricacies of the classical guitar, which I am determined to learn.

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Collection librarians like Farley work in collaboration with outreach librarians, who support research, curricular and information literacy. More about other outreach librarians for the arts: Creative Catalysts: VCU’s arts librarians

Kanopy: Try new video streaming service

Kanopy News

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VCU Libraries introduces a trial of Kanopy, one of the largest, educational streaming video services, providing access to more than 26,000 documentaries, feature films, shorts and more.

The VCU academic community is invited to use the service, which VCU Libraries has licensed,  during the trial period (through October 14) and provide feedback to inform a purchase decision. Your feedback about research and teaching use of this new resource by you and your students is valuable, so please let us know what you think.

Included are many of the libraries’ most circulated DVD and VHS titles: Still Killing Us Softly 4; La Jetee; The National Parks; Race, the Power of Illusion; A House Divided; Rome, Open City; Apted’s Up series; Crude, the Real Price of Oil; Graduating Peter; Recovering Bodies; Art & Copy.

Collections include:

  • Feature and international films from: Criterion/Janus Films, New Day Films, First Run Features, Media Education Foundation, Kino Lorber Education, Flicker Alley (silent film classics), Film Movement
  • Documentaries from: Media Education Foundation, Green Planet Films, Roland Collection, Michael Blackwood, PBS, BBC, California Newsreel, Documentary Educational Resources, Psychotherapy.net  

Access the Kanopy interface from Trial Databases. Soon, individual titles will be added within VCU Libraries Search. Kanopy features include closed captioning, tools for links, social media and embedding players. Create an account to save clips and playlists. Explore through searching, browsing and recommendations, then refine through the subject, date, language and other limiters at the bottom, left of the interface.

By Nell Chenault, Film and Performing Arts Research Librarian

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Image: Kanopy Streaming

Underground and Independent Comics and Graphic Novels

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Underground and Independent Comics, Comix and Graphic Novels is the first scholarly database that is focused on adult comic books and graphic novels.

Browse through one of the thousand of titles, including works like “Terrific Comics” and “Pocket Full of Rain and Other Stories.” It includes more than 75,000 pages of original material dating back to the 1950’s.

Comic, comix and graphic novel enthusiasts are able to browse through a number of categories such as characters, genres, publishers and subjects. The advanced search option gives comic enthusiasts the ability to search for specific titles, art credits and colorings. The database also allows users to create themed collections of materials based on their choice of themes, authors and more. The help option gives useful tips on browsing through subjects, creating playlists and answers to frequently asked questions.

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By Katlyn Pierre, public relations intern. For more information about this resource or others

Image: Underground and Independent Comics, Comix and Graphic Novels

Dance in Video: Dance technique and style reference

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With more than 500 hours of video to choose from dance enthusiasts are able to find instructional dance videos from a variety of genres. It contains genres from contemporary ballet to avant-garde. Watch Frederic Franklin and Stanley Zompakos beautifully recreate excerpts from Mozartiana or discover the proper center work techniques with the Finis Jhung Ballet. There is a video for everyone to enjoy.

The database offers insight into dance moves from the most influential performers and companies of the 20th century with nearly 800 videos to access. Dance in Video provides users with in-depth coverage on dance techniques and styles for dance lovers to discover.

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By Katlyn Pierre, public relations intern. For more information about this resource or others

Image: Creative Commons

Journal of Social Theory: Art education resouce

Scholars Compas

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An important publication in the arts world, The Journal of Social Theory in Art Education, now has a new publishing base: Virginia Commonwealth University’s Scholars Compass.

VCU Libraries launched it in mid-summer. Paper proposals for the next thematic issue on “Navigating Divides” will also be managed through Scholars Compass. Deadline for submission is October 15.

Published annually since 1980, and currently edited by a VCU faculty member, The Journal of Social Theory in Art Education (JSTAE) serves as an alternative voice in art education. It showcases research that addresses social issues, action and transformation as well as creative methods of research and writing. JSTAE is the official journal of the Caucus of Social Theory in Art Education, an issues group of theNAEA National Art Education Association.

“We were founded to represent points of view that have not always been embraced or accepted by mainstream journals,” said Editor Melanie Buffington, Ph.D., an associate professor of Art Education at VCUArts. “As a journal, we are open to a range of article formats and different points of view. There are numerous traditional journals in the field. We co-exist alongside them and present a range of voices.”

The intersection of arts and society provides a broad canvas for JSTAE. Recent article topics include craft as activism, feminist zines, religion and visual culture, freedom of speech and censorship, and public monuments and memorials. Many of the ideas explored and theories investigated have immediate real-world applications in schools, non-profits, galleries, public art offices and other community resources that generally lack access to scholarly journals.

“Anyone who is interested in the content, anywhere in the world can now access it,” Buffington said. “The theories our members and authors embrace often address underserved populations, so making these ideas freely available to a wider audience is appropriate for our mission.”

Outreach beyond academic circles was appealing to Buffington, who particularly wants teachers to have access to these ideas that can translate to classroom use. For the first time, the peer-reviewed journal’s full archives, from the first issue in 1980 to the present, are openly available online.

An additional appeal to Scholars Compass, she said, is posting contributions that go beyond text and include robust images, video, audio and interactive components. “Contemporary artists expand the limits of works of art. It is fitting that an art education journal expands the limits of what is an article.”

JSTAE is a sound example of the kind of journal that is well suited to open-access publishing. It serves the public and also serves scholarship. Its content has public-serving purposes and fulfills VCU’s mission of translational research–moving findings and ideas from the academy quickly into the public realm, where scholarship can improve quality of life and society.

“Given the international prominence of VCU’s School of the Arts and the established reputation of JSTAE, this is a great fit for Scholars Compass,” said Jimmy Ghaphery, Head of Digital

Technologies for VCU Libraries. “We expect the journal to continue to grow in exposure and gain readership through our search engine optimization. We are also very excited that the journal embraces open-access publishing as a way to share its content as widely as possible. This is especially rewarding to me in a field like art education, where many of the practitioners do not have access to high priced subscription journals.”

“This is our first full peer-reviewed open access journal in Scholars Compass since we launched less than one year ago,” said Sam Byrd, Digital Collections Systems Librarian at VCU Libraries. “We invite more faculty to bring their projects to VCU Libraries. We’re here to help.”  Byrd can be contacted at sbyrd2@vcu.edu.

About Scholars Compass

Academic journals are at the foundation of scholarship. As digital access becomes more the norm and prices of printed or electronic journals continue to rise unchecked, academic libraries nationwide are providing affordable avenues for easier publication online and management of the peer-review process. Run by VCU Libraries, Scholars Compass provides technical support and training to faculty who want to manage journals, peer-review processes, conferences, conference proceedings and reports and much more. Have a project to discuss? Contact: Sam Byrd, sbyrd2@vcu.edu.

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Image: Illustration of an article on assessment by Sharif Bey, Syracuse UniversityThe Journal of Social Theory in Art Education, Cover, No. 34

African-American Music: Genres, artists and liner notes

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African-American Music Reference contains more than 50,000 pages of text and 17,000 pages of liner notes that offer insight into one of the many forms of African-American musical expression.

The site provides essays with commentary on the various works it has to offer. It contains a variety of genres from American folk to hip-hop and rap. Discover artists like Willis Laurence James and Jay-Z. With the database, users can not only search through their works, but are able to read artists’ biographies and find related resources on that very person.

Users can search genres, people, instruments and more. African-American Music Reference also allows users to create playlists to compile personal favorites for class viewing and listening assignments or use as a teaching resource for in-class use. It is regularly updated so users can use the “what’s new” option to search through the newest updated images and essays.

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By Katlyn Pierre, public relations intern. For more information about this resource or others

Image: Creative Commons

Virtual Realities: Video game resources

Virtual Realities

More than 183 million people (57 percent of the population) in the United States play video games at least one hour daily. With so much time spent online, how can we separate virtual from real? What does scholarship about gaming reveal about the marketplace, leadership, teamwork and  entrepreneurship? Virtual worlds not only connected with reality but also inform and shape how we function daily. From earning mayoral status in Foursquare to discovering new football moves online, persistent virtual worlds influence our thoughts and behaviors in many ways.

According to researchers Jesse Schell and Jane McGonigal, young people will spend more than 10,000 hours online before they are 21. This equals the amount of time they are in class in grades five through 12. In addition, in their book “Got Game,” John Beck and Mitchell Wade argue that the brains of people who grow up playing games are wired differently from those not exposed to gaming from an early age.

“Gamification”–the use of game-like properties in non-game settings–engages people in activities that offer opportunities to earn and collect points and use those points for privileges. Examples are frequent-flier programs and retail store loyalty cards.  Also, the game “Re-Mission” was designed to attract teenagers with cancer who are now in remission. They play and earn points but the real outcome is to continually remind players about the importance of taking their medicine, even as they are feeling better. There are numerous other examples of gamification as ways to deliver information and influence behavior. Educators and employers have a unique opportunity to engage those who are comfortable in the digital space.

VCU’s Business and Collections Librarian Pattie Sobczak has expertise in gaming and virtual works as they connect to business and real world challenges. Available to consult with faculty who want to integrate gaming materials into curriculum, she writes and presents widely on the topic. Her doctoral dissertation in a program on human and organizational systems was on Ephemeral leadership in the workplace and in on-line gaming. Her doctoral dissertation in a program on human and organizational systems was on leadership in the workplace and in online gaming. See her presentation at a recent Digital Pragmata workshop.

Her recommendations for reading to inspire teaching and further research are:

The Gamification of Learning and Instruction: Game-based Methods and Strategies for Training and Education
http://search.library.vcu.edu/VCU:VCU_ALMA51454069210001101

The Gamification Revolution: How Leaders Leverage Game Mechanics to Crush the Competition
HF5414 .Z53 2013
http://search.library.vcu.edu/VCU:VCU_ALMA21434701690001101

The Gamification of Learning and Instruction Fieldbook: Ideas into Practice
http://search.library.vcu.edu/VCU:VCU_ALMA51448185070001101

Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World
GV1201.38 .M34 2011
http://search.library.vcu.edu/VCU:VCU_ALMA21380347320001101

Gamification in Education and Business
http://search.library.vcu.edu/VCU:VCU_ALMA51454554330001101

Creating E-Learning Games with Unity: Develop Your Own 3D E-Learning Game Using Gamification, Systems Design, and Gameplay
http://search.library.vcu.edu/VCU:TN_ebraryebr10854999

A Gamified Collaborative Course in Entrepreneurship: Focus on Objectives and Tools 
Computers in Human Behavior
http://search.library.vcu.edu/VCU:TN_sciversesciencedirect_elsevierS0747-5632(14)00700-6

Gamifying Learning Experiences: Practical Implications and Outcomes
Computers & Education
http://search.library.vcu.edu/VCU:TN_ericEJ1007852

Motivational Effects and Age Differences of Gamification in Product Advertising
The Journal of Consumer Marketing
http://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/full/10.1108/JCM-04-2014-0945

Gamification, Social Networks and Sustainable Environments
International Journal of Interactive Multimedia and Artificial Intelligence
http://www.ijimai.org/journal/node/527

By Sue Robinson, director of communication and public relations. For more information about this resource or others

Image: Creative Commons

Creative Catalysts: VCU Arts Librarians

VCU Arts Librarians

Nell Chenault, Emily Davis Winthrop and Carla-Mae Crookendale can help you create, teach and find inspiration. Each of them brings a love and appreciation of the arts, related educational credentials and librarian savvy to their roles in VCU’s creative community.

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Nell Chenault, Film and Performing Arts Research Librarian

Schools and Departments Served: Cinema, Dance, Music, Photo/Film, Theatre, Art Foundation, MATX and Film Studies

Expertise/education

  • BA, English, University of Virginia
  • MLIS, Catholic University of America
  • Former Media Librarian and Head, Media and Reserves, VCU Libraries

Areas of interest

  • Intellectual property for media is always an interesting puzzle.
  • My interests are shifting toward intellectual rights in the global information commons. These rights issues impact us as both media and information producers and consumers.
  • Documentaries

What do you like most about what you do?

Media artist Nam June Paik described his work as “archeology of the present” with the goal of circulating ideas, digging them up from the ruin of the past to understand the present. He characterized his work as “priviledged.” I have experienced this through witnessing the works of the VCU community and sharing my knowledge and the VCU Libraries’ resources to help faculty and students reach their vision and come to new understanding.

What currently has your attention?

At home, I have been sorting and moving my large vinyl and CD collections, revisiting old favorites and playing overlooked recordings.

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Carla-Mae Crookendale, Visual Arts Research Librarian

Schools and Departments Served: Art Education, Art History, Communication Arts, Craft/Material Studies, Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Interior Design, Kinetic Imaging, Painting and Printmaking, Sculpture and Extended Media, Art Foundation, MATX

Expertise/education

  • BFA, Metals and Jewelry/Art History minor, Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD)
  • MFA, Fashion, SCAD
  • MLIS, Valdosta State University
  • Costume shop manager and adjunct faculty, Theater Department, Belhaven College
  • Adjunct faculty, Metals and Jewelry Department, SCAD
  • Reference Librarian, SCAD

Areas of interest

  • Visual literacy, the ability to find, make and ethically use images and visual media.
  • User experience, helping library users have effective and enjoyable experiences in physical and virtual library spaces.
  • Design for good, how design can be used in innovative ways to make the world a better and more beautiful place.

What do you like most about what you do?
Working with creative people in a dynamic and diverse environment, constantly learning and being inspired.

What currently has your attention?
A terrific art, design and visual culture blog called Colossal http://www.thisiscolossal.com/. It’s a great way to discover new artists, and ranges from the quirky (Turn Boring Vegetables into Spaceships and Racecars with Le FabShop’s 3D-Printable ‘Open Toys’) to the whimsical (Artist JeeYoung Lee Converts Her Tiny Studio Into Absurdly Elaborate Non-Digital Dreamscapes) to the awe-inspiring (An Expansive Swirling Snow Drawing Atop a Frozen Lake by Sonja Hinrichsen).

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Emily Davis Winthrop, Arts Collection Librarian

Schools and Departments served: Collection development for the School of the Arts, with the exception of Music. Kevin Farley, PhD., Humanities Collections Librarian, handles collection development for Music.

Education and Expertise

  • BA, Art History, VCU
  • MA, Art History, VCU
  • PhD candidate, Art History (expected Spring 2015), VCU
  • Major field: 19th and early-20th century European art
  • Minor Field: Colonial Latin American art
  • Instructor, VCU Art History department and VCU Glasgow Artists and Writers Workshop

Areas of Interest

  • Epistemology. The core of being a bibliographer is to constantly examine the field of knowledge. What foundations and theoretical frameworks are necessary to make art, to understand art and to teach art?
  • Gender theory and theories of design. My own research focuses on issues of gender in art and theories of design and decorative arts circa 1900. My dissertation, “The Female Nude in Art Nouveau: Allegories of Modernity” looks at the ways in which the nude conveyed a message of modernism and how the form helped to destabilize the categories of fine and decorative art.

What do you like most about what you do? 

You become very myopic in graduate school, I enjoy the breadth and variety that comes with collection development.

What currently has your attention?
Formats. From electronic books and online catalogue raisonnés to 16mm and half-inch video reels, the arts have a variety of necessary formats all with their own issues.

Image: 

Art Browsery: VCU art book collection

Art-browsery_slider-compressor
Look, learn and create: The Art Browsery, a dedicated book display on the fourth floor, James Branch Cabell Library, offers new, beautiful books that can inform your creativity.
“When you are caught up in the creative process of making art, sometimes you need to take a break and find added inspiration,” says Carla-Mae Crookendale, VCU Libraries’ visual arts librarian. She and arts collection librarian Emily Davis Winthrop identify titles that are right for The Browsery and showcase new titles there before moving them into the general collection, usually with the other oversized books on the fourth floor.
Browsery books are visually rich tomes on art, craft and design topics. They are marked with colorful bookstrap labels and they are available for checkout. There is a self-checkout station a few steps away from the display.

The Art Browsery will be refreshed as new titles arrive, so come by now and find some inspiring new materials, and come again to find more in the future.

Here is a brief list, compiled by Crookendale, of some of the new titles you’ll find in The Browsery.

Tiny Creatures: the world of microbes by Nicola Davies. Illustrated by Emily Sutton, 2014. A beautifully illustrated look at the world of the microscopic organisms, fusing art and learning for kids of all ages.

The Gay 90’s by Mark Ryden, 2013. Features the latest work by painter Mark Ryden who blends pop culture references with a painting style reminiscent of Jacques Louis David or Ingres. The results are whimsical, surreal – and just a bit twisted.
Tokyo Adorned by Thomas C. Card, 2014. Photographer Card captures the wildly over-the-top personalities and style of the kawaii Lolita street fashion subculture in Tokyo.
Dancescapes: a photographic journey by Shobha Deepak Singh, 2014. An exploration of the history of dance in modern India, this book features dreamlike vignettes of flowing bodies and costumes caught in dramatic motion.
Charles James: Beyond Fashion by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2014. A comprehensive overview of the work of Charles James, known as “America’s First Couturier.” Features photos of his intricately structured ball gowns as well as archival items about his design and production process.
Ai Weiwei: Evidence, edited by Gereon Sievernich, 2014. Illustrations and texts by and scholarly essays on the recent work of the acclaimed Chinese artist and activist featured in an exhibition at the Martin-Gropius-Baus museum in Berlin.
Landscape Installation Art, edited by Ifengspace, 2013. Photographs and analysis of immersive and interactive sculptural experiences created in range of media and settings.
Work of Art: Folk Artists in the 21st Century by Carmella Padilla and John Bigelow Taylor, 2013. A celebration of the richness and diversity of traditional art making all over the world, including painting, sculpture, decorative arts, clothing and jewelry.
Myths and Mysteries: Symbolism and Swiss Artists, edited by Valentina Anker & Pierre Rosenburg, 2013. Spirituality, psychology and the occult as expressed through the Symbolist movement in the arts of the 19th century.
Mariette Pathy Allen: TransCuba, by Mariela Castro, Allen Frame & Wendy Watriss, 2014. A photo-documentary exploration of the transgender community in Cuba, including interviews and analysis of its evolving role in Cuban culture.
Image: The Art Browsery, Fourth Floor, James Branch Cabell Library

Index of Christian Art: Catalogs of Christian art

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The Index of Christian Art catalogs art found within a broadly-defined Christian context. In its digital form, the index contains some 80,000 full-text records and more than 100,000 images dating from 30 C.E. to 1550 C.E.

Founded in 1917 and continuously updated, this resource is maintained by Princeton University. Much of the art in the index comes from the western world, but recent efforts have been made to include art from a broader range of countries, including Egypt, Lebanon, Syria and Ethiopia.

Art is categorized based on subject–figures, scenes, nature, objects and miscellany. The Index of Christian Art has an especially large collection of crucifixion scenes, saints and personifications.

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Image: The Index of Christian Art

Reliable Film Resources: Core film studies indexes

New in 2013: two comprehensive core film studies indexes with applications for film scholars and movie lovers alike.

  • Film Indexes Online: A scholarly alternative to the Internet Movie Database, Film Indexes Online provides descriptions for 120,000 films and 735,000 film personalities from 1893 to present. This database also adds a strong international focus to VCU Libraries’ online film and media resources with representation of more than 170 countries. It also includes unique search features like genre/subject/theme, film music and literary adaptations as well as cross-referencing to assist with pseudonyms, corporate consolidation and name changes. Find It
  • Film and Television Literature Index with Full Text: Maintaining international coverage with a North American focus, Film and Television Literature Index provides comprehensive indexing and abstracts for more than 680 academic journals, magazines and trade publications, with full-text entries for 120 journals. Also included are book chapters, industry reports, Variety movie reviews (1914-present) and more than 36,000 images and movie stills. Researchers can explore the spectrum of media scholarship from theoretical aspects and technical elements to critical reception and popular culture impact. Find It

Compiled by Nell Chenault, film and music research librarian

Image: Film Indexes Online

The Vogue Archive: More than a century of cultural history

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More than a century of cultural history is easily accessible in image and text through The Vogue Archive. The Vogue Archive gives users digital access to the entire run of the U.S. edition of Vogue(1892-present) with its photographs, articles and advertisements. Comprehensive indexing allows for searches of keywords, materials, products, garments, designers, individuals and companies.

Students from a wide range of disciplines will find this resource useful, from fashion, interior design and art history to advertising, mass communications and gender, sexuality and women’s studies.

While many people think of Vogue as just a fashion magazine, in reality it presents a broad portrait of its era;Vogue documents both style and society.

From The Vogue Archive website:

“The contents of Vogue are obviously of central importance to the history of fashion, from the liberating modernism of Coco Chanel to the cross-gendered experimentation of Jean-Paul Gaultier and beyond. However, it is also a rich source for other areas of modern culture, providing a record of changing social tastes, mores and aspirations in the modern world, and encompassing literary works by Kate Chopin, Evelyn Waugh, Vladimir Nabokov and Carson McCullers, articles by Winston Churchill and Bertrand Russell, wartime photojournalism by Lee Miller, features on popular cultural figures of the day from Marlene Dietrich and the Beatles to Nicole Kidman and Beyoncé, and on prominent American women from Jackie Kennedy to Michelle Obama.”

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Image: The Vogue Archive, VCU

Digital-Tutors: Online training library

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Digital-Tutors, a vast online video training library, presents professional instruction that is accessible and comprehensive. Designed by industry professionals, video tutorials assist artists and designers in developing skills and learning the latest techniques for two-dimensional and three-dimensional digital art, game development, video and video effects.

With more than 24,000 videos and constantly growing, Digital-Tutors is the largest resource of its kind with training that ranges from learning basics of a program such as Photoshop to advanced instruction for scripting in Nuke. Tutorials cover major design software as well as smaller, more specific programs. These include: Adobe design and photography software, Maya, Zbrush, Cinema 4D and many more.

Members of the VCU community first must create a member account and log in to our group.

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Image: Digital-Tutors website

Film and Television Index: Online media resource

Film and TV Index

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Film and Television Literature Index with Full Text is an exciting resource for film, television and new media research. Maintaining international coverage with a North American focus, this database provides comprehensive indexing and abstracts for more than 680 academic journals, magazines and trade publications, with full text entries for some 120 journals. Also included are book chapters, industry reports, Variety movie reviews (1914-present), and more than 36,000 images and movie stills. Through Film and Television Literature Index, researchers can explore the spectrum of media scholarship from theoretical aspects and technical elements to critical reception and popular culture impact.

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Image: Creative Commons