Newberry Titles

Altered and Adorned: Using Renaissance Prints in Daily Life

Altered and Adorned: Using Renaissance Prints in Daily Life

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Today Renaissance-era prints are typically preserved behind glass or in solander boxes in museums, but these decorative objects were once a central part of everyday life. Altered and Adorned is a delightful, surprising look at how prints were used: affixed on walls; glued into albums, books, and boxes; annotated; hand-colored; or cut apart.

This handsome volume introduces readers to the experimental world of printmaking in the mid-15th and 16th centuries and the array of objects it inspired, from illustrated books, sewing patterns, and wearable ornaments to printed sundials and anatomical charts. It features many never-before-published treasures from the Art Institute of Chicago's rich permanent collection, along with essays on the ways prints functioned--in some cases as three-dimensional and interactive works--and how their condition communicates their use.

Distributed for the Art Institute of Chicago

Home Front Daily life in the Civil War

Home Front: Daily Life in the Civil War

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More than one hundred and fifty years after Confederates fired on Fort Sumter, the Civil War still occupies a prominent place in the national collective memory. Paintings and photographs, plays and movies, novels, poetry, and songs portray the war as a battle over the future of slavery, often focusing on Lincoln's determination to save the Union, or highlighting the brutality of brother fighting brother. Battles and battlefields occupy us, too: Bull Run, Antietam, and Gettysburg all conjure up images of desolate landscapes strewn with war dead. Yet the frontlines were not the only landscapes of the war. Countless civilians saw their daily lives upended while the entire nation suffered.

Home Front: Daily Life in the Civil War North reveals this side of the war as it happened, comprehensively examining the visual culture of the Northern home front. Through contributions from leading scholars from across the humanities, we discover how the war influenced household economies and the cotton economy; how the absence of young men from the home changed daily life; how war relief work linked home fronts and battle fronts; why Indians on the frontier were pushed out of the riven nation's consciousness during the war years; and how wartime landscape paintings illuminated the nation's past, present, and future.

A companion volume to a collaborative exhibition organized by the Newberry Library and the Terra Foundation for American Art, Home Front is the first book to expose the visual culture of a world far removed from the horror of war yet intimately bound to it.

Humanities’ Mirror

Humanities’ Mirror: Reading at the Newberry, 1887-1987

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With 30 color photographs and illustrations, this catalog from the Newberry Librarys Centennial exhibit in 1987 provides a modest yet rich introduction to the Newberry’s remarkable history and collections. 

Prints in Translation 1450-1750

Prints in Translation, 1450-1750

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Printed artworks were often ephemeral, but in the early modern period, exchanges between print and other media were common, setting off chain reactions of images and objects that endured. Paintings, sculpture, decorative arts, musical or scientific instruments, and armor exerted their own influence on prints, while prints provided artists with paper veneers, templates, and sources of adaptable images. This interdisciplinary collection unites scholars from different fields of art history who elucidate the agency of prints on more traditionally valued media, and vice-versa. Contributors explore how, after translations across traditional geographic, temporal, and material boundaries, original 'meanings' may be lost, reconfigured, or subverted in surprising ways, whether a Netherlandish motif graces a cabinet in Italy or the print itself, colored or copied, is integrated into the calligraphic scheme of a Persian royal album. These intertwined relationships yield unexpected yet surprisingly prevalent modes of perception. Andrea Mantegna's 1470/1500 Battle of the Sea Gods, an engraving that emulates the properties of sculpted relief, was in fact reborn as relief sculpture, and fabrics based on print designs were reapplied to prints, returning color and tactility to the very objects from which the derived. Together, the essays in this volume witness a methodological shift in the study of print, from examining the printed image as an index of an absent invention in another medium - a painting, sculpture, or drawing - to considering its role as a generative, active agent driving modes of invention and perception far beyond the locus of its production.

Renaissance Invention: Stradanus’s Nova Reperta

Renaissance Invention: Stradanus’s Nova Reperta

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This book is the first full-length study of the Nova Reperta (New Discoveries), a renowned series of prints designed by Johannes Stradanus during the late 1580s in Florence. Reproductions of the prints, essays, conversations from a scholarly symposium, and catalogue entries complement a Newberry Library exhibition that tells the story of the design, conception, and reception of Stradanus's engravings.

Renaissance Invention: Stradanus's "Nova Reperta" seeks to understand why certain inventions or novelties were represented in the series and how that presentation reflected and fostered their adoption in the sixteenth century. What can Stradanus's prints tell us about invention and cross-cultural encounter in the Renaissance? What was considered "new" in the era? Who created change and technological innovation?

Through images of group activities and interactions in workshops, Stradanus's prints emphasize the importance of collaboration in the creation of new things, dispelling traditional notions of individual genius. The series also dismisses the assumption that the revival of the wonders of the ancient world in Italy was the catalyst for transformation. In fact, the Latin captions on the prints explain how contemporary inventions surpass those of the ancients. Together, word and image foreground the global nature of invention and change in the early modern period even as they promote specifically Florentine interests and activities.

The Newberry 125: Stories of Our Collection

The Newberry 125: Stories of Our Collection

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To mark its 125th anniversary, the Newberry has assembled one hundred and twenty-five of its most significant objects in one beautifully illustrated volume. Arranged in order to tell both the story of the library as an institution and its collecting history, The Newberry 125 covers a great breadth of topics including: American culture throughout the ages; the history of Chicago and the Midwest; geography and exploration; religion; music and dance; Medieval and Renaissance studies; and the indigenous peoples of North America. Each of the highlighted items has been photographed in stunning full color and is accompanied by a brief description, its call number, and a concise yet informative essay by a Newberry curator, librarian, or researcher on the object's importance to the collection. By describing the unique physical qualities of these items, as well as their great scholarly import, these essays remind us how irreplaceable many of these maps, books, and documents are--and how much they still have to offer us. The pieces themselves show us the amazing power of physical objects, particularly the products of humanists over many centuries. Included are items as varied as a painting by Elbridge Ayer Burbank, the correspondence between Ernest Hemingway and Sherwood Anderson, the earliest print version of Voltaire's Candide, and a copy of Ptolemy's Geographia that dates from the fifteenth century. The Newberry 125 is as wide-ranging and impressive as the library itself, and it serves as a wonderful introduction to the collection, as well as a new and fascinating lens through which visitors and fans can view the Newberry.

Published to commemorate our anniversary, The Newberry 125: Stories of Our Collection features images and essays highlighting 125 outstanding items from our collections. Each item is presented with a one- or two-page spread that includes stunning high-resolution photographs and an essay by a Newberry curator, librarian, or researcher documenting the item’s historical context, literary significance, and amusing tidbits about production, reception, and provenance.

Arranged so as to tell both the story of the library as an institution and its collecting history, The Newberry 125 covers a wide range of topics, including American culture; the history of Chicago and the Midwest; geography and exploration; religion; music and dance; medieval and Renaissance studies; and the indigenous peoples of North America.

The collection includes items as varied as a painting by 19th-century artist Elbridge Ayer Burbank; the correspondence between Ernest Hemingway and Sherwood Anderson; the earliest print version of Voltaire’s Candide; and a copy of Ptolemys Geographia that dates from the fifteenth century.

The Newberry 125 serves as a wonderful introduction to our collection and provides a new and fascinating lens through which visitors can view our library.