20 January 2015

the artichoke's library

Thomas Hill, the art librarian at Vassar College, has one of the most fascinating feeds on my Facebook newsfeed. He finds intriguing links and posts great pictures. Almost a year ago, in March 2014, he posted something about a show at Special Collections entitled The Architect's Library. I really wanted the catalog and ordered a copy from the Vassar bookstore. It didn't come but I didn't act immediately. When I called the bookstore about the order during the summer, I got a message that they were being remodeled and were closed. Then, when I was in the area between Christmas and New Year's, I stopped on campus hoping to check about my order in person.
Now, the bookstore was closed for the holidays. I finally got my act together today and called the bookstore about my order. They were closed in the summer because they were shifting from being a Barnes & Noble outlet to independence. By now, I wasn't so worried about filling that order as just having the book. Since the Special Collections website indicated that the catalog could be ordered from them, I said to forget that old order and I'd just check in with them. It was my own stupid procrastination that had caused the order to go unfulfilled. So I called Special Collections and they said they'd put one in the mail today.

So what's with the "artichoke" in the post title? It's a tribute to Judith Holliday, the late architecture librarian at Cornell University. She was a consummate bibliographer and she'd refer to the architects as artichokes, mostly the students. She made my Cornell cataloging days happy with her selections, especially those in Italian. And she even taught me how to say Chigi. It's not chee-gey but key-gee. Thanks, Judith.

The print of Horace Walpole's library is from the webpage for the show and the photo is of Old Main at Vassar in the late-afternoon winter sunshine.

1 comment:

Thomas Hill said...

Hi Sherman,

Thx for the kudos. Yes we're good at publishing nice catalogs, but not so good at distribution I'm afraid. Rather like Lucy and her football. Glad you got a copy finally.