VRC launches collection with Hyde Park Art Center
March 3, 2020
The Visual Resources Center is pleased to announce the launch of a new collection on the LUNA database which features selections from the Hyde Park Art Center exhibition archive.
The collaboration with the Hyde Park Art Center is part of the VRC’s ongoing initiative to increase its efforts to document the installation archives of art spaces on campus and in the surrounding Hyde Park neighborhood. In Autumn 2018, the VRC received a Community Engagement RFP from the University of Chicago Diversity & Inclusion to create public digital access to the Hyde Park Art Center archive. The grant enabled the VRC to onboard two project fellows, Evelyn Yan Jin (MAPH ‘19) and Nicole Carter, the Archives Intern at the Hyde Park Art Center. Together, they digitized over 1,000 items from 62 shows, including photos, catalogs, checklists, and posters, that captured over fifty years of the institution’s exhibition history from 1962-2017.
“Through organizing and cataloging the images and documents, I learned a lot about the Hyde Park community and Chicago’s past. It was also interesting to see, through these archival materials, how the space of the Hyde Park Art Center morphed and transformed for diverse expressions over time,” said project fellow Evelyn Yan Jin.
Founded by a group of artist volunteers in 1939, the Hyde Park Art Center evolved into a flourishing communal Chicago arts institution. Throughout its history, HPAC has been in dialog with UChicago campus arts spaces such as the Renaissance Society and the Smart Museum and in fact, the connections between HPAC and campus go back to its inception: the Center's first executive director, Harold Haydon, was Professor in Art at the University.
“Our hope is that making selections from HPAC's enormously important exhibition archive collection publicly available—and allowing its content to be discovered alongside other archival collections hosted in our Luna database—will be a tremendous benefit to researchers and the local community alike,” stated Bridget Madden, Associate Director of the VRC.