Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Digital Scriptorium April News



Digital Scriptorium
April News
Wednesday 26 April 2017

Devonshire Chaucer, Beinecke Library, Takamiya Deposit MS 24, England, 1440-1460.

Like Chaucer’s pilgrims, many of us consider April as the month to say goodbye to winter and make travel plans. So the DS Board of Directors would like to invite all our Members, Associates, Advisory Council, and friends to the next annual meeting, to be hosted by E.C. Schroeder and the Beinecke Library on Thursday 05 October 2017. The all-day meeting on Thursday will be followed by a two-day conference about the Takamiya Collection of British manuscripts, October 6-7, to be held in conjunction with the exhibition Making the English Book: the Takamiya Deposit at the Beinecke Library. In addition to a chance to view this exhibition, the DS meeting will include a presentation of the manuscript collections of The Ohio State University by Eric Johnson. 



Japanese orihon bindings at CODEX book fair, February 2017.
The DS Board of Directors (formerly known as the Executive Committee) will meet at the Beinecke on the day before the annual meeting on Wednesday 04 October 2017. The Board held their semi-annual meeting (a new but already valued tradition) on Friday 10 February 2017, at the Bancroft Library of the University of California, Berkeley. The meeting was scheduled to coincide with two important book fairs, the California International Antiquarian Book Fair, which included many displays of medieval manuscripts, and CODEX, which focused  especially on artists' printed books.  




Besides attending the book fairs the Board was offered a tour of the Bancroft Library by Professor Elaine Tennant, Director of the Bancroft, and David Faulds, Curator of Rare Books and Manuscripts and DS contact person. The current Bancroft exhibitions included a recently discovered letter signed by Dr. FĂ©lix Rey, which contains a verbal description and detailed sketch of Van Gogh’s self-inflicted amputation of his ear. David assisted author Bernadette Murphy in locating the letter among the Bancroft’s papers of Irving Stone, who wrote Lust for Life, a biographical novel about Van Gogh published in 1934. For more details see Murphy’s book, Van Gogh’s Ear (NY: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2016).



The business of the Board meeting on February 10th was conducted in two sessions, governance in the morning and technology in the afternoon. Governance business included the draft of a new Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for DS Members and Associates, in order to establish in writing the basic parameters of institutional participation in the consortium. This document is not intended as a contract but rather to summarize some of our new organizational arrangements for existing participants as well as to help new participants with practical concerns. The MOU is posted on the DS “About” web pages, under “Governance.” We ask all participants to please give their attention to the MOU and keep a copy of it in their files. 

The technology business at the February 10th meeting included a presentation of IIIF technology by Benjamin Albritton of Stanford University Libraries. Ben has been instrumental in organizing the international IIIF Community Manuscripts Group. Individuals interested in IIIF technology may want to attend the 2017 IIIF Vatican Conference, to be held on 5-9 June 2017. Lynne Grigsby also gave a report about the new DS metadata template and recent enhancements to the DS online catalog, including larger thumbnails and faceted search filters by Language, Century, and Country. 

The Board also decided to offer a survey to send to the DS mailing list in order to assess user preferences for future development of the database. The complete minutes of the Board of Directors meeting are posted on the “Governance” page, next to the DS Bylaws.

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