Life in Stereoscope

Three cheers for Life in Stereoscope: Viewable Vistas, Industry, and Family Life, on view at the UT School of Information through November 16. This exhibit is created by the students in my course, Planning and Understanding Exhibits. Every bit of the exhibit is designed and executed by the students, from item selection and narrative flow to writing text; designing for print; building exhibit supports; creating interactive, educational elements; and promoting the exhibit within UT and beyond. Check us out on Instagram!

Special kudos to our web team, who designed our exhibit website using CollectionBuilder. This open-source software is created by the University of Idaho with support from the Institute for Museum and Library Services and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Our class was selected from a competitive pool to provide a test case for this software. The students will provide feedback to help refine this tool that supports the creation of sustainable, digital collections and exhibits.

Special thanks also to visiting stereocard artist Tay Hall, who discussed their process and works at our exhibit reception. Tay’s work demonstrated modern applications for this historical format. Learn more at

Sound and Media Artist Holland Hopson Visits Algorithmic Assemblages Exhibit

This spring, INF 386E, Planning and Understanding Exhibits, created the exhibit Algorithmic Assemblages: Do Machines Dream of Art?.

Drawings that represent Roller skating covering Hypogean fishes, a student artwork featured in our class exhibit
Drawings that represent Roller skating covering Hypogean fishes, a student artwork featured in our class exhibit

This exhibit featured the data-based artwork A Work of Art for Every Entry in Index – Subjects – Library of Congress by sound and media artist Holland Hopson.  The artwork generates descriptions of non-existent artworks by using actual Library of Congress terminology; our students then created real artworks based on these fabricated descriptions.  We were so pleased to host Holland at our exhibit closing reception, and to work with him throughout the semester!

Exhibit closing reception on April 13, 2023
Exhibit closing reception on April 13, 2023

Holland also presented two talks while visiting us here at UT: “Listening as a Creative Act,” sponsored by the Bureau for Experimental Ethnography and “Data as Medium,” sponsored by UT’s Visual Arts Center.  Thanks to Marina Peterson and MacKenzie Stevens for coordinating these talks, and to Holland for being our visiting artist!

All Dolled Up: Playing with Identity in 1940s Paper Dolls

Three cheers to the students in INF 386E, Planning and Understanding Exhibits, who successfully launched their class exhibit on paper dolls. Titled All Dolled Up: Playing with Identity in 1940s Paper Dolls, the exhibit explores issues of power and agency; identity and play; gender roles during wartime; and big-screen celebrity. Today’s opening reception featured 1940s-themed music, food, and dancing. The exhibit will be on display in the UTA building now through December 1, 2022. Many thanks to UT’s School of Human Ecology for the chance to work with this fascinating collection.

See our press coverage in Austin Monthly, CultureMap Austin, and Glasstire.

And be sure to also visit the exhibit online!

Exhibit window
All Dolled Up explores play and power in 1940s paper dolls.
Lindy Hop dance steps.
Visitors can learn the Lindy Hop with vinyl dance steps on the floor.
Activity table
Create your own paper doll bookmark, and test your skills finding a doll in the exhibit.
Rita Hayworth cutout
Pose as Rita Hayworth in The Loves of Carmen
Reception table with Jell-o salads
Reception table featuring Jellied Egg Salad and Orange Dream, two 1940s Jell-o molded salad recipes.

On My Desk Stat! Paper Copying in a Changing Workplace

On Friday, April 15, students in my course INF 386E Planning and Understanding Exhibits celebrated the opening of their class exhibit. On My Desk Stat! Paper Copying in a Changing Workplace documents copying processes from the 19th – 21st centuries and considers their impact on human health and safety, on waste in the environment, and on gender in the workplace.

Promotional flyer for On My Desk Stat!

The opening event was a fun way to re-connect with colleagues as we took in the exhibit, enjoyed snacks, played a beat-the-typist game featuring a real typewriter, and tested our knowledge in copying trivia to win iSchool mugs, water bottles, and t-shirts. We were so pleased to host visitors from UT and beyond at this event.

Students, faculty, and visitors at our opening event. Photo: Abi Glasser.

Our students have worked hard on every part of this exhibit, from choosing items and crafting narrative to writing text, building web presence, promoting the event, building display elements, and much more. The exhibit is on display on the first floor of the UTA building through 4/28, and you can catch the exhibit online and see updates on Instagram. Congratulations, students!

Behind the scenes during exhibit installation. Photo: Abi Glasser.