This week marks the final days of the installation and exhibition, Living Lines by Lynn Randolph, a piece commissioned by Arts Brookfield and on view through October 9th at Total Plaza. The 16-foot long oil pastel mural pulls from the sketchbooks of Randolph, providing a window into the creative process of not only the individual artist, but artists as a whole. Curated by Sally Reynolds, the exhibition is held in cooperation with the artist and also features a number of Randolph’s individual paintings.
Lynn Randolph is probably best known as an artist. Or, is it writer? Or, maybe activist. Labels can be tricky. Throughout her life she has seen her art and/or her writing intermingled with her passion for women’s rights and human rights. Originally from Port Arthur, TX, Randolph attended the University of Texas where she received her BFA before returning to Houston and establishing an impressive artistic legacy. Her works have been reproduced in a number of books, academic papers, and journals (including Coronation of St. George, which was reproduced for The Nation) as well as widely exhibited throughout the United States and are part of permanent collections at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the Menil Collection, and The National Museum of Women in the Arts, among others.
Her work with women’s rights and human rights was far reaching and art became a natural conduit for her work in these areas as well. In 1984 she and her friend Suzanne Bloom organized in Houston for the Artist Call Against U.S. intervention in Central America, a broad umbrella of artists, activists, and others seeking to bring attention to the crimes being committed as part of U.S. foreign policy in the Western Hemisphere. In 1992 Randolph joined the Women’s Action Coalition and helped the New York based group organize protests of the Republican National Convention held in Houston. Prominent in the protests were the use of drum corps. Born from this experience were the Ilusas (or “deluded women”), a Houston-based drum corps that continued to perform until they disbanded in 1997. In 1993 Randolph and Marilyn Zeitlin traveled to El Salvador and helped organize an exhibition of Salvadorian artists entitled, Art Under Duress, El Salvador from 1980 to Present, which was mounted at the Arizona State University Art Museum and also traveled to Houston with an exhibition at the Lawndale Art Center.
For those interested in the artist’s process, the University of Houston Special Collections is pleased to offer the Lynn Randolph Papers for study. Included in this collection are documents and materials related to her artistic and literary career, as well as her activism and public service, and research and personal papers. In addition, a number of items and works by the author have been individually cataloged to facilitate discovery. The Lynn Randolph Papers are available for study, along with the other collections comprising our Carey C. Shuart Women’s Archive and Research Collection, during our normal research hours. We encourage you to catch Living Lines in these final days and be sure to visit Special Collections for further study with the artist’s papers.
New and varied content continues to be published via the Digital Library on a regular basis. Thanks to these efforts, researchers unable to visit the Special Collections Reading Room in person benefit from remote access to critical primary resources. Last week some new additions went live and Vince Lee, Archivist for the Carey C. Shuart Women’s Archive and Research Collection, provides us with the details below.
Who knew that oral histories could be so much fun and attract such a star-studded lineup? The University of Houston Special Collections is pleased to announce six new additions to the Barbara Karkabi Living Archives Series. You’ll meet Houston women who impacted the environmental movement, allowing us to enjoy Houston’s green spaces, women who had a hand in designing the architecture you see all around you, and women whose dishes you may have savored in the culinary world. If that wasn’t enough, watch an interview with Joanne King Herring as she recounts her role in charities and assisting Afghan resistance fighters (as depicted by Julia Roberts in Charlie Wilson’s War). Or, if pop culture grabs your interest, Tina Knowles talks about her early life and career in establishing her brand in the fashion industry (yes that “Knowles,” the mother of Beyoncé–who attended the original interview recording, by the way, and drew huge crowds on campus). Finally, we have our very own President Khator as she recounts her own personal life and journey which took her from India, to the United States, to ultimately being confirmed as the President and Chancellor of the University of Houston.
Visit the Barbara Karkabi Living Archives Series or Carey C. Shuart Women’s Archive and Research Collection for more information.
The exhibit, “Collective HER-story, A Mosaic Masterpiece: Exploring the Carey C. Shuart Women’s Archives” comes to a close this week.
This ambitious exhibit, featuring a broad and eclectic range of history representative of the Shuart Archives, opened on October 14, 2013 and enjoys its final weekend at the M.D. Anderson Library, running through Sunday March 2nd. From Mayor Annise Parker to the Gorilla Girls, from former Mayor Kathy Whitmire to the WNBA’s first dynasty, the Houston Comets, the “Collective HER-story” exhibit has a little something for everyone.
UH Moment: HER-story Celebrates Accomplishments of Women in Houston
The M.D. Anderson Library and exhibit are open to the public over the weekend. The “Collective HER-story” exhibit can be viewed on the first and second floors of UH’s M.D. Anderson Library (Exit 1 off Calhoun Road). Come catch it (one last time) before it closes. The exhibit may close, but the legacy of these women and study of their history will endure.
Archivist Vince Lee of the Carey C. Shuart Women’s Archive and Research Collection will showcase artifacts from the recently acquired Toni Beauchamp Papers at Table Talk 2014, presented by the University of Houston Friends of Women’s Studies on Thursday, February 27th.
Defining Toni Beauchamp’s legacy in Houston is an exciting challenge. The term “patron” was often applied to her during her lifetime and certainly remains today. However, her involvement with art went beyond mere patronage, and we may find that word to be too narrow, now. The role of art was exemplified into two spheres in her life, civic duty and personal advocacy. Her involvement and leadership on such public projects involving the renovation of Buffalo Bayou and Market Square Park fulfilled a vision that art, thoughtfully integrated with urban design, results in beautification, preservation, and forging an identity for the community. Art was also very personal for Toni. Art provided her a means to shape and influence the community, forge friendships, and most importantly it was an opportunity for her to educate and share information with others.
Her connection to the University of Houston dates back to 1973, when she earned her BA in Art and where she would later serve as assistant director of the Blaffer Gallery. The acquisition of her papers, thanks to the generosity of her husband Jeff Beauchamp, has us very excited to begin the work of processing, arranging, and making these materials available for study to scholars both local and abroad. These papers complement other offerings in Special Collections like her collection of essays, Good, and “Remembrances of Toni” (a collection of reflections on Toni’s life) compiled by her husband Jeff. The spirit and legacy of Beauchamp make her papers a natural fit amongst the other bold women at the vanguard, whose collections grace the stacks of the Shuart Women’s Archive.
At Table Talk 2014 Vince Lee will have artifacts from Toni Beauchamp’s work on Good, as well as her involvement with the “Buffalo Bayou Master Plan” and “Market Square Park Project.” Friends of Women Studies hosts the annual Table Talk series, “a fascinating combination of conversations over lunch, led by dynamic women of various cultures, professions and experience at each table,” benefiting Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies at the University of Houston. A list of Conversationalists attending this 17th annual Table Talk can be found here.
Time permitting, be sure to attend Table Talk 2014 and visit with Vince Lee for more information regarding the legacy of Toni Beauchamp, the research potential her papers will offer, and their new home in the Carey C. Shuart Women’s Archive and Research Collection.
As we mentioned previously, the Women’s Resource Center was founded a decade ago in part based on recommendations from the University Commission on Women. Whether sponsoring the “Take Back the Night” march, hosting “Gender Talk,” or producing the annual “Vagina Monologues,” the staff of the Women’s Resource Center works tirelessly to provide education and resources as part of their mission “to advocate, educate, and provide support services for the advancement of gender equity on campus.”
We would like to issue a hearty congratulations to the WRC as they celebrate a decade of success and growth and look forward to the next ten years. We would also like to remind the community at large that we are very pleased to make available for study the Women’s Resource Center Records here at the University of Houston Special Collections. As part of the Carey C. Shuart Women’s Archive and Research Collection, the UH Women’s Resource Center Records are joined alongside an always expanding number of collections ready for study. We invite you to join us in celebration and study at your earliest convenience and be sure to visit the Women’s Resource Center website for more information regarding ongoing and upcoming events hosted by the WRC.