St. Lawrence University will receive funding from a national organization that represents private colleges and universities to create and support a digital collection of art and images for both teaching and research.
The Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) has selected St. Lawrence to participate in its Consortium on Digital Resources for Teaching and Research. The award will support digital archiving of a sizable street art collection housed at the Richard F. Brush Art Gallery while also allowing faculty, students and staff to engage in collaborative work with other institutions, including those in the New York 6 Liberal Arts Consortium.
The project will be led by Catherine Tedford, director of the Brush Art Gallery, who has been actively building a physical international collection of original street art stickers. The collection serves as the basis for the “Street Art Graphics” digital archive, which has been exhibited at St. Lawrence as well as galleries in Canada, Germany and the U.S. The project will also be supported by Eric Williams-Bergen, director of digital initiatives, who works within St. Lawrence’s Libraries and Information Technology (LIT) division and will focus on planning, implementation and support.
“Ms. Tedford’s ‘Street Art Graphics’ digital archive offers a unique window on virtually every aspect of the human experience over the past century,” said William L. Fox ’75, president of St. Lawrence University. “That, in and of itself, makes the collection an important resource for students, educators and scholars, as demonstrated by its integration into several St. Lawrence courses.”
Support from CIC will allow St. Lawrence to use Artstor’s digital asset management tool known as Shared Shelf. Artstor is a nonprofit organization that supports digital collections for universities, museums, schools and libraries worldwide.
“Joining this consortium will allow us to create and manage a digital archive of international Street Art Graphics that we can share with the public in Artstor’s Shared Shelf Commons, a free, open-access digital image library,” Tedford said. “I always describe Artstor as the visual equivalent to JSTOR, the digital library of academic journals, books, and primary sources. Artstor and JSTOR are both subscriber-based, but Shared Shelf Commons is available to everyone, which is in keeping with the Street Art Graphics digital archive.”
The CIC Consortium on Digital Resources for Teaching and Learning is made possible by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. CIC’s award will cover up to two years of using Shared Shelf and two years’ worth of half funding. CIC will also provide support for both Tedford and Williams-Bergen to attend training workshops in Washington, D.C.
President Fox previously served on the CIC board of directors, and St. Lawrence Trustee S. Georgia Nugent serves as a senior fellow at CIC.