The University of North Florida Thomas G. Carpenter Library aspires to be the intellectual center of the community, to foster innovations leading to the discovery of knowledge and to further the research and scholarly endeavors of its users.
Significant to advancing our community is making available meaningful programs and personal development activities. The Library fosters personal and professional success by hosting a wide array of events and collaborating with on and off-campus partners who bring transformative learning to our visitors.
Donations from the community provide these enrichment opportunities, the "extras" that really elevate the student, faculty and community member experience -- translating to increased graduation rates.
On November 15, 2017, the Dean's Leadership Council's (DLC) annual Gratitude Reception was held in the UNF Gallery of Art. It was a very special evening in which the Library Administration welcomed new DLC board members, enjoyed an inspired panel discussion celebrating the UNF Library's Special Collections & University Archives and honored the 10th anniversary of the Dean's Leadership Council by awarding six council-members with new designations as either Distinguished or Charter memberships. Each council member was presented with a personally inscribed Crystal Book. These board members have maintained continual volunteerism and financial support of the Library since the inception of the Library Dean's Leadership Council in 2007-8.
* Ron Stephan & Dr. Walter Graham ~ Distinguished Award-winners
* Andre' Boutte', John Irvin, Evelyn McDonald & Jen Jones Murray ~ Charter Award-winners
Distinguished members are rolling off of active council participation and maintaining their annual pledges, which provide critically needed support for student and Library-user enrichment. Charter members are maintaining both active and financial support of the Library's enrichment needs. Jen Jones Murray has moved into full time administrative department employment within the UNF Library.
During heavy hors d'oeuvres and refreshments, our Library Council enjoyed hearing from donors to Special Collections, regarding why they selected the Thomas G. Carpenter Library to house, digitize, offer online and protect their individual contributions from the history of our community.
The panel discussion of collection donors included:
* Susan Towler, Florida Blue Collection (1940's-present)
* Dr. Grady Johnson, Dr. Edna L. Saffy Women’s History Collection (1962-2010)
* Ed Gamble, Florida Times Union Political Cartoon Editorial Collection (1980-2010)
* Richard Mette, Jacksonville Civic History & Vintage Postcard Collection (1865-1940's)
Upon completion of the presentation, guests were treated to their holiday gift, each receiving a set of custom designed note cards developed by the Library featuring stunning highlights from the Richard Mette Vintage Postcard Collection. For more information on this vast community archive please visit it online through Digital Commons: http://digitalcommons.unf.edu/mette_postcardimages/
Beginning October 23, 2017 and on display for one year, the Jacksonville International Airport will present the “Community Connections to Our Past” exhibition, a treasure-trove of rare and unusual regional archives, documents and artifacts from the University of North Florida Thomas G. Carpenter Library Special Collections and University Archives, as part of its 50th anniversary celebration.
“It’s an honor to be part of celebrating the 50th anniversary of the airport by exhibiting examples from 10 of the Library’s many historic special collections. These collections are gifts from community members and can be enjoyed by all. These collections are truly a connection to our everyday history,” said Dr. Elizabeth Curry, UNF Library dean.
The exhibit is in the Sky Gallery, which is located in the central courtyard next to the Haskell Gallery, and is open daily from 5 a.m. to midnight. Some of the highlighted collections include a 20-year history of the Mayor’s Commission on the Status of Women; Ed Gamble Collection of political cartoons; Eartha White Collection; Larry Smith Photography Collection, capturing Jacksonville from 1960 to the 1990s; History of UNF; and the Richard Mette Vintage Postcard Collection, featuring more than 100 years of photography of our region, to name a few.
The exhibit also delivers the Jacksonville International Airport's first-ever "Lending Library", popular in airports across the globe! This is a free “take a book leave a book” Lending Library for all ages. It features separate nooks for Children & Teen as well as Adult reads. Books are provided by community members, travelers and the UNF Library. Furthermore, the artistic book cart was provided by HOBNOB Restaurant, located at Unity Plaza on Riverside Avenue (see Lending Library pictured above, right).
“The University of North Florida Thomas G. Carpenter Library is at the heart of the University and an important educational, cultural and preservation resource for our seven-county service region,” said Jen Jones Murray, JIA Arts and Culture Program manager. “By way of our Sky Gallery, the Jacksonville International Airport Arts and Culture Program is honored to partner with the UNF Library’s Special Collections and University Archives to illustrate our community’s story to millions of passengers traveling through Jacksonville over the next year.”
The Jacksonville International Airport currently serves more than 5.5 million travelers annually, plus those who accompany or greet them, many of whom enjoy its cultural displays and gallery spaces. The Sky Gallery at JIA is one of only two areas located pre-security where visitors may view the runway. Its walls combine to measure 92 feet in length and in the center of the gallery are four large display cases for 3-D art and artifacts. Exhibitions in the Sky Gallery feature some of the best and brightest cultural organizations of our community, providing public education regarding the service region of Jacksonville.
St. Augustine photographer Daniel Bagan, hired to take photos at a 2013 party, was surprised at the end of the evening to see Gloria Steinem and Dorothy Pitman Hughes, the co-founders of Ms. Magazine, standing before his camera. When someone in the room suggested the duo reenact their 1971 iconic fist-in-the-air pose, the two stood side by side once again — as they had more than 40 years earlier — and allowed Bagan to snap a piece of history.
As of October 9, 2017 that moment now hangs for all to see in Thomas G. Carpenter Library, at the top of the stairway to the second floor, a gift from Bagan to the University for the Art in the Library program's 10th Anniversary. Bagan and Pittman Hughes unveiled the photograph at a reception in October. Though the library holds the only signed copy, two additional copies also have been accepted in the permanent collections of the City Museum of New York and Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery.
Library Dean Elizabeth Curry said that Pitman Hughes, who now lives in Jacksonville, was pleased that students would be able to see the photo. “She really loves talking with young people and would be willing to come on campus and talk with classes,” Curry said. “I think students would benefit from meeting her.” Curry explained that a student thanked the dean after the program saying: “I can’t believe I actually got to meet Dorothy Pitman Hughes. She’s an icon. She’s part of history.”
October 9, 2017
“As an artist, I know that a work is never finished until it is presented,” Jim Draper said, as he stood before a group gathered to celebrate the opening of a new student art gallery at the Thomas G. Carpenter Library. “I believe this gallery will provide a great opportunity to teach students how to finish their work … it will show them how to get their art off the table and onto the wall, with proper framing and proper display.”
Draper, instructor and curator of UNF’s galleries, thanked longtime donors Cynthia and Walter Graham, M.D. for funding the special lighting needed, which in turn would offer students the transformational experience of learning how to curate art. The new student art gallery is located on the library’s second floor.
After the reception, Library Dean Elizabeth Curry said she already had experienced the impact of the donation to students. “I was very touched to see one of the students who had his mother, his father and his grandmother there to see his work being celebrated,” Curry said. “I believe this new display area will be very meaningful to our art students.”
Cynthia and Walter Graham have been patrons for the past 10 years, donating money to bring sculptures, a reading nook, three different study rooms and now a student art gallery to the library. Dr. Graham is also a Distinguished Member of the Dean’s Leadership Council.
On June 20, 2017 UNF Curator of Galleries and professor Jim Draper collaborated with New York sculptress and printmaker, Lorrie Fredette, and UNF Fine Art students to install the first showcase of student art at the Thomas G. Carpenter Library's brand new "Cynthia and Walter R. Graham, Jr., M.D. Student Art Gallery" (aka UNF Student Art Gallery).
Underwritten by Cynthia and Walter R. Graham Jr., M.D., this Student Art Gallery becomes the first formal, professional, curation space populated by student art and curated by the student's themselves under the leadership of Prof. Draper. This space will provide art students with an additional means of gaining valuable gallery experience and exposure for their artwork. In the fall an event will be held to celebrate this important space and to recognize our generous donors. Stay tuned as we announce future shows!
The inaugural show of student created, hand-pulled prints is in collaboration with Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville's Summer Arts Series. For additional information please visit MoCA's page here.
On February 23, 2017, the National League of American Pen Women, Inc. celebrated both its 120th Anniversary as a national organization and the 90th Anniversary of its Jacksonville branch. To commemorate Women’s History Month, the Library, UNF Women’s Center and Jacksonville Branch of the NLAPW co-hosted this multi-anniversary event on the 1st Floor of the Library and brought women creators in the Visual Arts, Music and Writing together with a panel discussion on the history and future of this important national organization. The event was free and open to all and brought students and the community-at-large together to share fascinating dialogue and delicious refreshments.
NLAPW Jacksonville President Duncan Sawyer, a professional photographer and a proud member of the first graduating class of UNF, led the panel and our celebration of the thousands of women who demonstrate how deep, strong and meaningful the contribution of women’s voices, minds and hands are to the arts right here on the first coast. Sawyer’s grandmother, the late Mary Freels Roseborough, was author of two historic novels and a founding member of the Jacksonville Branch of the NLAPW. Joining Sawyer on the panel was artist and National Membership Chair Patricia Setser, author and composer Jan Atchley Bevan and editor and poet Fletcher Shipp, all members of the NLAPW Jacksonville Branch.
When the National League of American Pen Women, Inc. was founded in 1897, women journalists were not permitted to join the National Press Club. Few women artists or composers were recognized for their talents. Members such as Vinnie Ream, Eudora Welty, Pearl Buck, Eleanor Roosevelt, Amy Beach, Carrie Jacobs Bond, and thousands of others have banded together for 120 years to illustrate the importance women play in the arts.
Today, the NLAPW has 81 branches in 35 states and many members-at-large. There are over 1,600 professional women artists, writers, composers, sculptors, photographers, choreographers, poets, etc., who are members of the League, some in large cities such as New York, Atlanta, San Francisco and Honolulu, and others in rural areas, such as Vermont and the Dakotas. From Mississippi Delta public schools to Boca Raton women’s correctional facilities, from Hawaii’s Girl’s Court to after-school centers in Washington, D.C., Pen Women have experienced first-hand the personal enrichment that comes from arts engagement. The NLAPW offers Membership-at-Large opportunities as well as associate and student memberships. NLAPW is a diverse membership with no barriers to full participation on the basis of age, race, creed, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, or class. http://www.nlapw.org