This article discusses the successful collaboration of an art librarian, a science librarian, and a special collections librarian in their efforts to engage the community in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) conversations through the curation of a STEAM-based exhibition of artist books. The exhibition was an opportunity to showcase STEAM’s interdisciplinarity through library collections that, until this point, had remained unexplored. The goal was to demonstrate how scientific principles have inspired both contemporary artists and those throughout history, dispelling the myth that artists are not influenced by science. The Libraries’ Special Collections proved an excellent resource to investigate these ideas as it held numerous artist books that take science as their subject. An opportunity also presented itself to commission a regional artist and University alumna to create a new artist book based on scientific collections held at the University's natural history museum, as well as work with the local middle school to engage students in the making of artist books.
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Hilles, Stefanie; Boehme, Ginny; and Makarowski, Rachel
"Exhibiting STEAM: Curating Community Conversations through Library Collections,"
The STEAM Journal:
1, Article 17.
Available at: https://scholarship.claremont.edu/steam/vol5/iss1/17
Stefanie Hilles is the Arts and Humanities Librarian at Wertz Art and Architecture Library at Miami University, where she liaisons to the art, architecture and interior design, and theatre departments, manages their collections, and instructs information literacy sessions. She holds an M.A. in Art History from Case Western Reserve University and an M.L.I.S. from Kent State University. Stefanie has served as Chapter Liaison on the Art Libraries Society of North America (ARLIS/NA) executive board (2019-2021), presented at numerous conferences, including ARLIS/NA, ARLIS/UK & Ireland, IFLA, LOEX, and RBMS, and has been published in Art Libraries Journal and Public Services Quarterly Ginny Boehme is a Science Librarian at King Library at Miami University. She conducts information literacy instruction for and is subject liaison to several departments in the life and health sciences. She holds a BS in Biology from Birmingham-Southern College, and a MLIS from the University of Alabama. Rachel Makarowski is the Special Collections Librarian at Miami University. In her position, she is responsible for many of the functions for special collections, including instruction, outreach, reference, cataloging, curation, and collection management. She graduated from Indiana University Bloomington with an MLS, specializing in Rare Book and Manuscript Librarianship. She previously worked at the Rare Book School during her time as an undergraduate at the University of Virginia. Her research interests focus on teaching with primary sources, including the intersection of primary source instruction with other responsibilities in special collections.