Architecture, Design, & Art Library News

Selections from the Kenneth Franzheim II Rare Books Room on Display

Rare books on the intersection of architecture and political theory are on display in the William R. Jenkins Architecture, Design, and Art Library.  Writings by architects Walter Gropius, Erich Mendelsohn, Louis Sullivan, and Frank Lloyd Wright on the nature of democracy, economic exploitation, and how both intersect with architecture accompany the books.
By on May 21st, 2024 in Uncategorized

Featured Artist Adrienne Simmons

The Architecture, Design, and Art Library proudly presents the work of featured artist ‘23-24 Adrienne Simmons. Her exhibit, A Landscape, Shifted, will be on view until July 2024. 

Do you ever feel a distinct type of pain when reflecting on a place in your past? The Welsh have a word for this feeling called hiraeth, which translates to “distance pain.” It’s not quite a nostalgic yearning, but the true pain of loving a place. Having moved frequently around the US, I often experience this sense of place-pain.

My work responds to the landscapes I visit. I’m drawn to the way the land shapes our personal histories and memories. I collect the fragments of our lives—domestic textiles, collected water, crushed seashells, clumps of earth, and vines to make homemade charcoal. These found materials are collaged with satellite imagery, cyanotype, and acrylic mediums in an intuitive and alchemical practice. This multimedia exploration allows me to establish a sense of place, map ideas of collective memory, and attempt to embed the landscape into the surface of my work. Ultimately, the connection made with the land and the resulting work reconciles my hiraeth.

Adrienne Simmons is a multi-disciplinary artist currently based in Houston, TX. She explores ideas of cartography and memory with found materials to untangle the relationship between people and their environments. Drawn to real and imagined landscapes, she uses printmaking, cyanotype, found objects, textiles, and abstract imagery in an attempt to understand how memories are embedded into spaces and places. Her work has been collected by UTMB and MD Anderson, and she has shown at the Houston Center for Photography, the Print Museum, and the Blaffer Art Museum, while pursuing her MFA at the University of Houston (2024).

Interview with Retiring Interior Architecture James B. Thomas, Available in UH Libraries’ Audio/Video Repository

James B. Thomas speaks about his career as a specialist in interior architecture in this 2018 interview, which was recorded in our Building Houston collection. Professor Thomas is retiring after a long career at the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture and Design.
By on May 7th, 2024 in Uncategorized

Institute of Classical Architecture & Art’s Digital Rare Books Archive Linked to Resources Page

The Architecture, Design, and Art Library has added the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art’s Digital Rare Books Archive to its recommended databases lists for art and architecture.  Browse or search this compendium of carefully curated digitized rare books about classical architecture and the allied arts, hosted by institutions around the world and assembled by the ICAA.
By on April 25th, 2024 in Uncategorized

Tracy Xavia Karner will Speak on April 17th for Books + Bytes, a Library Series on Book Publishing

Books and Bytes is a series of talks by local authors who discuss the research, writing, and publication of their art, architecture, or design book.  Our community of scholars is invited to participate in discussions afterward, so they may learn from one another’s experiences.  Books and Bytes is co-sponsored by the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture and Design and the University of Houston Libraries.

This conversation will take place on Wednesday, April 17th, at 6 pm in the Architecture, Art, and Design Library on the first floor of the College of Architecture Building.  

Making a Scene! is the story of how visionary individuals created an international art world around photography. A classic Texas tale of seemingly quixotic ideas, audacious goals, oil booms and busts, generous philanthropists, southern sensibilities, grandiosity, and resolve, this book documents the social history of ‘who did what and when’ to create an international photography scene in such an unlikely place as Houston.

Tracy Xavia Karner is a visual sociologist who writes about photography in fine art venues and everyday life. She is the chair of the Sociology Department at the University of Houston where she teaches courses in Visual Sociology, Sociology of Art, and Visual Culture.

By on April 5th, 2024 in Uncategorized

Rare Diego Rivera Books Now on View

Four books on the works of Diego Rivera from the Kenneth Franzheim II Rare Books Room are now on display in the William R. Jenkins Architecture, Design, and Art Library.  The bound books and portfolios are liberally illustrated with reproductions of frescoes, watercolors, portraiture, as well as other genre and media.  All were published in Mexico between 1934 and 1967.  Rivera was arguably the most important figure in the Mexican mural movement.  His style featured “a new iconography based on socialist ideas and exalted the indigenous and popular heritage in Mexican culture.”  (O’Connor, F.  (2003). Rivera (y Barrientos Acosta y Rodríguez), Diego. Grove Art Online.)

The works on view are:

12 reproductions in color of Mexican frescoes by Diego Rivera

Acuarelas, 1935-1945: Colección Frida Kahlo

El genial muralista mundialmente discutido maestro: Diego Rivera 

Pintura Mexicana: Diego Rivera

Pop-Up Art Library + FFAT 4/5

Pop-Up Art Library + First Friday Art Tours

Come find us during First Friday Art Tours at Blaffer Art Museum. We’ll have a selection of books thematically related to the museum’s current exhibition available for check out. Lunch will be provided after the tour. 

Date : Friday, April 5, 2024

Time: 12– 2 pm

Location: Blaffer Art Museum


Pop-Up’s Since 2018, the William R. Jenkins Architecture, Design, and Art Library has been partnering with Blaffer Art Museum to host Pop-Up Libraries each semester. It’s a fun and engaging way to promote services that provide instant connection to the UH community. Each pop-up consists of curated art books thematically related to the museum’s current exhibitions.  

This event is free and open to all students

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