New Acquisition: A Sammelband of Four Works by Johann Joachim Becher, 1680

Special Collections and University Arvhives is pleased to announce the acquisition of a collection of works by the German polymath Johann Joachim Becher (1635-1682), including Experimentum Chymicum Novum: Quo Artificialis & Instantanea Metallorum Generatio Et Transmutatio, Nochmaliger Zusatz über die Unter-erdische Naturkündigung, Oedipus Chymicus oder Chymischer Rätseldeuter, and Trifolium.

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The Magician Premieres Sept. 21st

SCUA recently provided archival footage for the producer of The Magician, a documentary film celebrating the influence of Bill Dellinger, the legendary UO track and field coach.  The premiere is on Friday, September 21st at Mac Court from 7pm-9pm. The event is free and will feature guest speakers, a raffle, and a no host bar. Learn more about the film’s creation and the premiere in this recent KMTR interview.

Produced by Travis Thompson of Elevation 0m, the film incorporates interviews with former student-athletes and members Dellinger’s family. Interwoven are clips of archival footage of Dellinger competing and coaching.  SCUA provided this footage from various collections, including KEZI-TV/Chambers Communications Corp records (Coll 427). Earlier this summer, the UO Libraries had the honor of hosting Dellinger and his grandson, and showed them selections from our various athletic collections.

Group photo taken in front of shelves of books
(L to R) Elizabeth Peterson, Lauren Goss, Bill Dellinger, Jennifer O’Neal, Keri Aronson
Courtesy of Travis Thompson / Elevation 0m

 

2018 Library Undergraduate Poetry Prize Winners

EUGENE, Ore. — University of Oregon Libraries and Oregon Poetry Association announce the winners of the inaugural Library Undergraduate Poetry Prize: Sarah Hovet and Joshua Plack. This award is given to two undergraduate students every other year who demonstrate high-quality works of poetry in which the library has played a role in their artistic output. The prize consists of a tuition-supported poetry workshop and a limited-edition printing of their winning poems to be distributed to select libraries in Oregon and to the prize winners.

This poetry prize was conceived in collaborative discussions between the two organizations over the past year. The UO Libraries is the official archive for Oregon poetry which has been substantially derived through contributions by the OPA. The director of Special Collections, David de Lorenzo, said “we wanted to add to the collection by supporting young poets whose work is worthy of recognition. The award idea received enthusiastic support and we plan to make it a permanent part of the undergraduate experience at UO. We are very honored to have the support of the OPA to make this award a reality.”

The 2018 Library Undergraduate Poetry Prize recipients will be presented with their awards and read their selected poems at a reception held in conjunction with the 2018 Oregon Poetry Association Conference. The schedule for the reception follows:

2018 Library Undergraduate Poetry Prize
Ceremony and Reception

Friday, September 28, 2018 · 4:00-6:00 p.m.
University of Oregon Knight Library Browsing Room
1501 Kincaid Street, Eugene, Oregon
Open to the public · Refreshments provided

Poetry Readings by
Library Undergraduate Poetry Prize recipients:
Sarah Hovet and Joshua Plack

Oregon Poetry Association invitees:
Andrew Gonzalez and Amy Miller

University of Oregon invitees:
Amanda Cox and Tia North

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New Acquisition: Athanasius Kircher, Ars Magna Lucis et Umbrae, 1646

Special Collections is pleased to announce the acquisition of Ars Magna Lucis et Umbrae (Great Art of Light and Shadow), one of the key scientific works, and possibly the rarest, by the German Jesuit scholar Athanasius Kircher (1602-1680). This acquisition was made possible by the generous donation of the Albertsen family.

Historical Background

A prolific scholar with a thirst for questioning and experimentation, Athanasius Kircher wrote on a wide range of subjects including Egyptology, theology, geology, technology, and medicine. He took a syncretic approach to scientific research, drawing on the mysteries of natural laws and forces as well as directly observable and measurable phenomena. For instance, his treatise on magnetism (Magnes sive de arte magnetica) covered the gravitational pull of the planets’ orbits, but also touched on love and the use of the tarantella as “musical magnetism” that would draw the toxins of a tarantula’s bite out of the human body.[i]

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Behind the Scenes: “Animal House” at 40

In the fall of 1977, John Landis and his Universal Pictures production crew came to Eugene, Oregon, to begin filming their college comedy Animal House on the campus of the University of Oregon. They recruited dozens of UO students as extras, and used many well-known campus buildings and landmarks as locations. The video above is a compilation of behind-the-scenes footage shot by local TV news crews, including the iconic parade scene shot in Cottage Grove, Oregon, as well as the demolition of the Delta house in the early 1980s. The news footage all comes from the KEZI-TV/Chambers Communications Corp. records (Coll 427), and the still images come from University Archives Photographs (UA Ref 3) in Special Collections & University Archives (SCUA).

Some of this same footage, plus additional clips and images from SCUA, is also available in a related video produced by the University of Oregon’s Communications & Marketing department to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the the film’s release. An article in the summer 2018 issue of the Oregon Quarterly explores the film’s local history and its ongoing impact as a cult favorite.

Both videos demonstrate how archival footage can be combined in different ways and recontextualized to tell new stories about history.

As a student delving into this archival collection of behind-the-scenes footage and outtakes, this project felt transportive as I immersed myself in images from the past forty years. It was also a learning experience in the context of the culture of UO, as well as the evolution of what we deem as socially responsible in relation to comedy. Archival video footage and images are unique in their ability to present the viewer with a view of the world as it used to be, which can lead to greater understanding of how the past influenced the present.

You don’t need to be a student at the University of Oregon to find something in KEZI-TV news collection to connect with. Parents, alumni, faculty members, fans of the movie, and all types of Eugenians will come across familiar sites as they stood forty years ago. From downtown Cottage Grove run amok to John Belushi finagling a horse through Johnson Hall, this collection provides us with a vision of our campus and the surrounding area through a retro, Hollywood lens.

For me, the image of Belushi playing his guitar in a booth at the EMU fishbowl resonates strongly. To see a Hollywood star sitting by the same windows many of us have gazed through while working on a project or getting lunch with friends makes the connection between then and now all the more palpable.

Of course, the film isn’t without certain problematic tendencies. While I’m not excusing the myriad punchlines that come at the expense of a variety of social communities, I will say that this archive is a fun look into the loose atmosphere of the film set. Furthermore, this film still serves as the largest vehicle for the city of Eugene’s representation in Hollywood lore, as it grossed over $140 million and spawned an entire generation of knock-offs. Because of this, our archival collections serve as an important look into the creation of Eugene and the University of Oregon’s Hollywood immortality.

Local celebrations will peak in August when Cottage Grove hosts a 40th anniversary parade, toga party, film screening, and other festivities. The historic Hollywood Theatre in Portland will screen a 35mm print of the film on August 17.

–Michael O’Ryan, Curatorial Assistant