Archives Month — October 2017

Librarian Dorothy Allen explains how to use reference materials in the library. October is Archives Month! (also AIDS Awareness Month coincidentally). Since we’re an archive, we’re celebrating! Archives Month, if you haven’t heard of it, is “an opportunity to tell (or remind) people that items that are important to them are being preserved, cataloged, cared for, and made accessible by archivists.” We’ll be taking this opportunity to host all kinds of events and happenings which will revolve around the historical materials we preserve.

What exactly will we be doing? A lot! Here’s a brief summary:

  • On October 4th: Opening reception at 12 pm for our exhibit of Dr. Arthur Ammann’s photo-montages — a call for an end to the violence against women represented by the global HIV/AIDS epidemic.
  • Also on October 4th: We’ll be participating in #AskAnArchivist Day on October 4th all day long. We’ll be diligently tending our Twitter account (@ucsf_archives), so send us questions about our collections, our jobs, or anything else to do with stewardship of historical materials! Tag your questions with #AskAnArchivist to join the conversation.
  • On October 6: Archives Lecture at 12 pm by Dr. David Smith on the history of the Haight-Ashbury Free Clinics, which he founded 50 years ago just down the street.
  • On October 17: ZSFG Archives Drop-in exhibit at 12 pm. Learn about the history of ZSFG, meet Griffin the ZSFG Archivist, and see materials from the collections.
  • On October 28: Visit us and other SF institutions for San Francisco Archives Crawl: Counterculture and Social Protest, 12-5pm.
  • On October 30: A Spoooooky Halloween open house at 12 pm in our reading room where we’ll exhibit various macabre images and frightening implements from the early days of medicine.

A Dental Student work on the teeth of a patient.

And of course, the main thing we will do this month is the same thing we do every month: steward the materials that document our collective past and inform our future. We hope you’ll join us in October to celebrate archives, and thank you for your support!

Exhibit Opening: HIV: A Plague of Violence Against Women

Exhibit Reception: October 4th, 2017, 12 pm to 2 pm

Opening Remarks at 12 pm by Drs. Arthur J. Ammann and Paul Volberding, Larkin Callaghan, PhD

Location: UCSF Parnassus Library, 530 Parnassus Avenue, San Francisco, 1st Floor Lobby (take the elevator or the stairs to the ground floor), UCSF Shuttles & ParkingPublic Transportation

This event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be provided.
REGISTRATION REQUIRED: http://calendars.library.ucsf.edu/event/3527701

This exhibit will be on view at the UCSF Library from October 4th, 2017 through March 30th, 2018.

Dr. Ammann. No One Is Listening.
Montage: Jiří Cernicky, Schizophrenia. (1998)
Edvard Munch, Maiden and Death. (1894).
Edvard Munch, The Scream. (1893)
Edvard Munch, The Sun. (1912)
Out of the Void, Pacific Ocean
Liquidambar styraciflua (seed pods)

Join UCSF Archives & Special Collections for the exhibit opening and reception of “HIV: A Plague of Violence Against Women”. This exhibit features a collection of photo montages by Arthur J. Ammann, M.D., a pediatric immunologist and advocate known for his research on HIV transmission and his role in the development of the first successful vaccine to prevent pneumococcal infection in 1977.  Dr. Ammann is also the founder of Global Strategies (http://www.globalstrategies.org/) , a nonprofit organization that serves women and children in the most neglected areas of the world where he witnessed not one but two epidemics affecting women —sexual and physical violence and HIV.

Through his surrealist lens, Dr. Ammann’s photo montages document the suffering he witnessed during his time working with HIV infected women in Africa. The world of art has been a refuge for Dr. Ammann since his childhood. The creations of great artists spoke to him about the unrelenting violence against women, the struggle between good and evil, and the valley of the shadow of death. Paintings by Blake, Bosch, Giotto, Kahlo, Munch, Caravaggio, Titian, Dali, Freud, Nerdrum, and Picasso, resonated with what he felt from his experiences.

For over a decade he put the images together, took them apart, and put them together again. The title of each photo montage is accompanied by a quote or words, many derived from the stories women told. These images are a collective demand that “Violence against women must be stopped.”

Dr. Ammann with collagues

The exhibit is also a call to action for Dr. Ammann: “We must never accept violence and injustice nor ignore its enduring wounds. We can create new voices and images for advocacy. We can move to repair the physical, emotional, and spiritual scars that remain. We can provide inexpensive and easy to use medicines to prevent the complications of rape―HIV, other sexually transmitted infections, and unwanted pregnancy.”

We invite you to explore this visually arresting exhibit in support of Dr. Ammann’s efforts to end violence against women.

 

Intern Report: Creating an Exhibit

This is a guest post by Caitlin Toomey, UCSF Archives Intern

Caitlin ToomeyHello, readers! My name is Caitlin Toomey and I was fortunate to be an intern at the UCSF Archives and Special Collections during spring semester. I am currently in the process of receiving my master’s degree in museum studies at USF. Since high school, I have either worked or interned at multiple museums and galleries throughout California, but my time at UCSF stood out as a unique and valuable experience.

While an intern, I was responsible for many different tasks and worked on a number of exciting exhibits. What stood out to me about this internship was the amount of skills I was able to gain and perform throughout the process. For the majority of my internship, I focused on the current exhibit on display in the Library, “DO THE BEST FOR OUR SOLDIERS:” University of California Medical Service in World War I. It was during this time that I completed many different duties.

I began by researching specific subjects, such as the influenza outbreak in 1918 and how troops were entertained on the front, which would be used in the exhibition as stand alone displays. I also wrote the labels with other curators for the exhibit. This was a valuable experience because I mostly have a background in education and collections, so working on more curatorial skills was very helpful. Additionally, collaboratively writing labels can be a challenging but educational experience, and as a result helped me with my writing skills.

WWI exhibit case, “Finding Time to Unwind,” on display in the UCSF Library.

Along with assisting in curation, I was also able to work on exhibit design and collections management for “DO THE BEST FOR OUR SOLDIERS”. I most enjoyed this part of the process because I was able to pick out artifacts for a number of the displays. Looking through the UCSF Archives and Special Collections storage was absolutely fascinating. The collection has so much to explore and discover on the shelves and stacks that I was never at a loss when looking for objects to display. I was also lucky enough to select and help place objects for a number of other special exhibits during my tenure, such as the UCSF Alumni Weekend artifact display of unique health science artifacts and the UCSF Cornerstone demolition series.

WWI-era U.S. Army Medical Department medicine kit used in the exhibit. From the UCSF Archives Artifact Collection, item 218.

Overall, I can look back on my time at the UCSF Archives and Special Collections as a very positive and educational experience. Not many internships give the opportunity to play a large role in exhibitions, as well as learn many different skills that will become valuable for a successful career. I know that I will take with me the many lessons I learned during these past few months. This was a wholly gratifying internship and I will cherish it throughout my career.