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Burdette Keeland Architectural Drawings & Photographs

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Now in the UH Digital Library:  Burdette Keeland, Jr. was an influential Houston architect who left a legacy as a designer, an educator, and a member of the Houston Planning Commission. At the peak of his practice, from 1950 to 1980, Keeland produced some of the city’s best modernist architectural design. Yet he will also be remembered for his four decades on the faculty of the University of Houston, where he dedicated himself to mentoring the next generation of architects. This digital collection provides a sample of five of his imaginative works, including architectural drawings and renderings, photographs, clippings, and audio interviews.

A 1950 graduate of the University of Houston, Keeland quickly developed a successful architectural practice. As with many architects of the period, his work of the 1950s reflected the influence of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Philip Johnson. Keeland’s innovative design for the Fred Winchell Studio and Apartments (with Harwood Taylor, 1953) combined a professional office with rental apartments on a small city lot. Two years later he produced his best-known work, a steel-frame residence for homebuilder W. K. King, featured in the 1955 Meyerland Parade of Homes.

In the 1960s Keeland’s work expressed other trends in architectural design. He interpreted the Brutalist aesthetic in the Essex-Houck Office Building (with Herman F. Goeters, 1962), where his tight grouping of masonry towers gave this small office building a sense of the monumental. In the Williams Beach House of 1967 (with Alan Rice), his crisp, shed-roofed volumes evoked the barnlike structures of California’s iconic Sea Ranch development.

Keeland experimented with new ideas in his own house on Ferndale Street.  In 1976 he transformed a modest 1930s house into an urban retreat for his family.  He made further changes in the 1980s and 1990s, but the rear courtyard received the most attention. He showed his flair for artistic and whimsical details in the over-scaled metal column that supports a second floor overhang; a few feet away a vine-covered spiral staircase offered access to a roof-top office and observation deck.

The original materials are available in UH Libraries’ Special Collections in the Burdette Keeland Architectural Papers.

Student art exhibits online

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Recent art exhibits by Araceli Casas and Trevon Latin have been added to the UH Digital Library.  Both exhibits were mounted in the Jenkins Architecture and Art Library’s A2A Alcove.  Mr. Latin’s “Orders from the Dead” series features mixed media pieces that are strongly influenced by outsider art and American history.  It is part of a larger oeuvre of works based upon an enslaved character in the antebellum South, conceived by Mr. Latin.  He earned his B.A. in Painting at the University of Houston in Spring 2015 and is now a working artist in New York City.  Ms. Casas’ whimsical series “Veggies in Space” came together when she married her exploration of still life techniques with her interest in science fiction.  Imperfect vegetables cruise through landscapes inspired by Hubble telescope photography.  Ms. Casas earned her BA in art history at the University of Houston and now studies and works in art education.  She is currently a teaching artist at the Texas Children’s Hospital.  UH Libraries gave both of these alumni their first opportunity to mount and exhibit their own work before a wide public audience.

Jenkins Library Ambassador Book Sale

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A book sale will take place in the College of Architecture atrium from 1-2:30 on Wednesday, May 10th, to benefit the Architecture and Art Library’s student ambassador organization.  Most books will cost $1.

Private tour of the Menil Collection building for Jenkins Library Ambassadors

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The Jenkins Library Ambassadors, the Architecture and Art Library’s student board, are hosting a private tour of the Menil Collection library and non-public spaces for students in the College of Architecture and School of Art.  Students will see extraordinary rare materials in the library, which is only open to the public by appointment.  A tour of the staff spaces, including art storage space and the underground workroom, will show students how museums function and use space.  Anyone interested in this building type or in a museum career should take advantage of this uncommon opportunity.

The tour will take place from 10-11:30 on Thursday, May 5th.  Students wishing to attend must RSVP to librarian Catherine Essinger at cwessinger@uh.edu.  Attendance is capped.

The Ambassadors will also be holding a meeting at 1 pm on Tuesday, May 3rd, in the upper mezzanine of the Jenkins Library in order to hold elections and a discuss upcoming business.  The meeting is open to new and current Ambassadors, as well as anyone interested in finding out more about this student organization.  The nominees for the Ambassadors’ executive board are:

President – Negin Nayeri, College of Architecture

Vice President – Angela Rios, College of Architecture

Treasurer – Edith Villasenor, School of Art

Secretary – Christine Hinojosa, College of Architecture

 

Architectural portfolios now in the UH Digital Library

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The following architectural portfolios in the Kenneth Franzheim II Rare Books Room have been digitized and are now freely available in the UH Digital Library:

Details and Ornament of the Italian Renaissance – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/6670

The Petit Trianon Versailles. Part I – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/7250

The Petit Trianon Versailles. Part II – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/7179

Denkmäler Deutscher Renaissance. Volume I – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/7000

Denkmäler Deutscher Renaissance. Volume II – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/6890

Denkmäler Deutscher Renaissance. Volume III – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/6725

Denkmäler Deutscher Renaissance. Volume IV – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/6835

Denkmäler Deutscher Renaissance. Volume V – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/6780

Denkmäler Deutscher Renaissance. Volume VI – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/6945

Denkmäler Deutscher Renaissance. Volume VII – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/7110

Denkmäler Deutscher Renaissance. Volume VIII – http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/7055

The Gnomon Workshop tutorials are now streaming at UH

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Our license with Gnomon includes more than 300 tutorials on drawing, design software and animation.  You may access it directly by clicking here.

Student art exhibit on display in the Jenkins Library

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“The Shortest Distance, an accidental series” by Talha Kabasakal has been installed in the A2A Alcove, located on the upper mezzanine of the William R. Jenkins Architecture and Art Library. Talha Kabasakal, a second-year student at the University of Houston, College of Architecture and Design, is majoring in industrial design and pursuing his goal of becoming a car designer. His series of ink-on-paper works that, in large measure, depict the artist’s life and expectations, referencing his love of cars, his preferred color red, and his native Turkey. In one particular piece Talha has played upon the notion of a personal geographic dichotomy by juxtaposing two places, two different countries – the familiar and the foreign, the old and the new, the past and the future. Though each occupies discrete areas, isolated at opposite sides of the composition, the two are connected by a bridge. Talha believes that there should always be a bridge, a connection. That bridge could represent hope, remembrance, love…

The library supports UH student artists by hosting exhibitions of their work throughout the year. All displayed works are digitally documented and included in the UH Digital Library.  You’re cordially invited to stop by the William R. Jenkins Architecture and Art Library for a look at The Shortest Distance, on display through April.

Shortest distance 2

Rare book on Italian Renaissance architecture now online

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A portfolio set from the Kenneth Franzheim II Rare Book Room has been digitized and placed online in the UH Digital Library.  Die renaissance in Italien presents important architecture from the Italian Renaissance.  The four volume set was published in Hamburg in 1907. 

Die renaissance in Italien. Eine sammlung der werthvollsten erhaltenen monumente in chronologischer folge geordnet. Früh renaissance:  http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/6209

 Die renaissance in Italien. Eine sammlung der werthvollsten erhaltenen monumente in chronologischer folge geordnet. Hoch renaissance:  http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/6571

 Die renaissance in Italien. Eine sammlung der werthvollsten erhaltenen monumente in chronologischer folge geordnet. Decoration in stein und terra cotta:  http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/6419

Die renaissance in Italien. Eine sammlung der werthvollsten erhaltenen monumente in chronologischer folge geordnet. Decoration in holz:  http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/frare/item/6015

Jenkins Library Ambassadors meeting February 11th

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The Jenkins Library Ambassadors are student leaders who serve as the library’s advisory board and who help their fellow students learn about research tools and services.  We are actively recruiting new members.  A lunchtime meeting will be held at noon in room 215 of the College of Architecture.  Pizza will be served.

 

Brochstein, Mashburn, and Paukune oral histories added to the UH Digital Library

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Three new oral histories have been added to Building Houston, a digital collection of interviews with people who strongly impacted Houston’s built environment, which is co-sponsored by the William R. Jenkins Architecture and Art Library and the Houston Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

UH alumnus David Bucek interviews Raymond Brochstein, FAIA, whose company Brochsteins, Inc. has supplied custom architectural woodwork and furniture to notable buildings designed by Richard Meier, Philip Johnson, SOM, Gensler, and many others.  Mr. Brochstein and his wife, Susan, are also notable philanthropists, who have helped develop Houston’s green spaces and who donated the Brochstein Pavilion to Rice University in 2010.

Joe Mashburn, FAIA, Dean of the UH College of Architecture from 1998-2009, discusses his career as an architect and educator with architectural historian Anna Mod.  He also addresses key moments in the history of the College of Architecture.  As a student in the late 1960’s, he studied with Doug Michels and Chip Lord and witnessed protests over the college leadership.

John Paukune was an unemployed architect just out of school when he walked onto the construction site of the Astrodome and was hired to help oversee its completion.  He discusses the politics, innovations, and problems behind the building of Houston’s most iconic structure with architect Kerry Goelzer, as well as his post-Astrodome career.

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