Past Exhibits

See past art exhibits

2017

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Setting the Stage: African-American Trailblazers in the World of Entertainment

February 2017

Level 1, Special Collections

2016

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Curious Remedies: Medicine During the Renaissance

December 2016 – September 2017

Level 3, Exhibits Gallery

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Discovering the United States Exploring Expedition

September 2016

Level 1, Special Collections

The United States Exploring Expedition is one of the great successes of the early republic. It is also one of the least well known of the voyages of discovery launched in the early nineteenth century by the fledgling United States. Come to the reference area of Special Collections to learn some more about this voyage of discovery!

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Comics & Mormons

August 2016 – March 2017

Level 1, Special Collections

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Who Moved My Media? Changes in Popular Media Formats

May – October 2016

Level 3, Exhibits Gallery

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Vocal Point: 25th Anniversary Retrospective

March 3 – 16, 2016

Level 1, Special Collections

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Lifetimes of Learning: G. W. Carver and Booker T. Washington

February 2016

Level 1, Special Collections

2015

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Life in Happy Valley: A Historic Survey of Utah County

December 2015 – April 2016

Level 3, Exhibits Gallery

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Building Faith: Bricks of Religion

October – November 2015

Level 1, Special Collections

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Rose Marie Reid: Glamour by Design

August 2015 – June 2016

Level 1, Special Collections

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‘Sacrifice Brings Forth the Blessings of Heaven’: Understanding the Nauvoo Temple

June 4 – August 14, 2015

Level 1, Special Collections

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This Is the Night We’ve Waited For: 100 Years of Family Home Evening

May – June 2015

Level 1, Special Collections

2014

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Christmas in the Collections

December 2014

Level 1, Special Collections

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Guns, Scrolls, and Swords

November 2014 – Fall 2015

Level 3, Exhibits Gallery

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Mormons at Salt Lake Comic Con

October 1 – 22, 2014

Level 1, Special Collections

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Images of the Book of Mormon

Fall 2014

Level 1, Special Collections

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The Great War: A Centennial Remembrance

September 2014 – July 2, 2015

Level 1, Special Collections

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BYU Expeditions of Discovery: The World Is Our Campus

May 2014 – October 2014

Level 3, Exhibits Gallery

2013

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Card’s Game: Orson Scott Card in the Library

October 2013 – March 2014

Level 3, Exhibits Gallery

This exhibit features the highlights of the library’s Orson Scott Card Collection. Timed to open with the motion picture Ender’s Game, the exhibit includes early drafts of Card’s major works along with translations of his work from around the world. There are 3D printed facsimiles of the space ships used in the film as well as a standee used in movie theater lobbies.

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Victorian Illustrators from Sketch to Print

Summer 2013 – Spring 2014

Level 1, Special Collections

This exhibit displays Victorian illustrations from books, magazines, pamphlets and more. The 19th century was a pinnacle in illustrations for books and other printed materials. Visitors to the exhibit space will be able to view original illustrations as well as their printed versions from Sir John Tenniel, famous for illustrating Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, original printing plates from Charles Dickens novels and art from Aubrey Beardsley, who illustrated the works of Oscar Wilde.

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William Wordsworth and the Invention of National Parks

March 2013 – September 2013

Level 3, Exhibits Gallery

This exhibit traces the origin of the idea of national parks back to the leading poet of the English Romantic Movement, William Wordsworth. Wordsworth inspired millions of hikers, climbers and artists as well as later American authors such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, John Muir, and Edward Abbey.

The exhibition includes both Wordsworth’s writing and examples of those who followed him. On display are first editions of Emerson’s Nature, Thoreau’s Walden, and Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass. Also displayed is John Muir’s 1901 Our National Parks. Each of these books is distinctly American, yet each also manifests a debt to Wordsworth and the transatlantic Romantic tradition. All of these American writers grew up on Wordsworth’s writings. Emerson even visited the aged poet in 1833, and his Nature was in some ways an attempt to complete Wordsworth’s work. Nature, in turn, became a major influence on Thoreau’s Walden.

2012

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Voices of the Civil War: Evidence and Artifacts

August 2012 – July 2013

Level 1

The devastation of the Civil War remains just as relevant today as it was 150 years ago. The Civil War defined us as Americans and continues to influence us as a country. This exhibit brings to life the voices of this monumental conflict—voices that teach us about slavery and freedom; about a nation’s union and disunion; about families torn apart; about a country forged by the crucible of war.

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Geospatial Technologies Connect You to the World

March 2012 – February 2013

Geospatial technologies impact us every day. They help us see the big picture, solve problems, make complex decisions, and better comprehend the activities of the past, present or future. Commercial imaging satellites provide current data while comparison of these images with historic maps helps identify change over time. This exhibit demonstrates how geospatial technologies are revolutionizing the way we see, understand, and interact with everything on, under, or above the earth.

You can visit the exhibit on the main level of the library, just around the corner from the east security desk. Admission is free and the exhibit is open during all regular library hours.

2011

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The Life and Legacy of the King James Bible: Celebrating 400 Years

August 26, 2011 – June 29, 2012

The centrality and ubiquity of the King James Bible from the late seventeenth century through the early twentieth century meant that for generations of English speakers, the King James translation was at the forefront of religious worship. From direct quotation or allusion to indirect echoes of its diction, its syntax, and the rhythms of its language, the King James Bible translation has influenced music, politics, literature, and the English language itself.

This exhibit tells the story of the King James Bible through the printed word, including early Bible translations that informed the text of the King James Version and a showcase of written works that have, in turn, appropriated and been inspired by the King James Version text.

2010

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Literary Worlds: Illumination of the Mind

August 2010 – July 2011

It starts with a little spark in the author’s mind. Perhaps it is something they experience or read, or a letter from a friend, or a suggestion from an editor. Maybe it comes from current events or a facet of daily culture. So many possibilities exist. Writing and the long process involved in achieving a published work has changed over the years, but the basic steps of illuminating the writer’s mind remain the same: from idea conception, to planning it out, to writing, rewriting, editing, and publishing. When all of these steps produce a published copy, the creation begins to illuminate many more minds with new ideas, epiphanies, and amusement.

This exhibit focuses on 24 poets and novelists in various stages of their careers and their creative processes. Letters, manuscripts, and drawings provide glimpses into favorite authors perhaps not considered before.

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Florence Nightingale: Life and Legacy

January 2010 – January 2011

Nightingale’s work in improving sanitation, reforming health care, reducing mortality in army hospitals, and establishing a systematic method for teaching nurses was legendary, if not heroic. As the “lady with a lamp,” Nightingale’s image is fixed in our minds: a ministering angel of compassion, dedication, extraordinary intellect, and grit.

Nightingale made many contributions to public health, statistics, and nursing education. Manuscripts, letters and books written by and about Nightingale, along with video interviews and reenactments, are featured in this exhibit commemorating the 100th anniversary of her death.

2009

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From Daguerreotype to Digital: Celebrating 170 Years of Photography

September 21, 2009 – May 27, 2010

In 1839, decades of research and experimentation came together and a somewhat mysterious and often magical new field of art and science was born. Using the physical action of light to capture moments of time, this new discovery was named “photography” by Sir John Frederick Herschel.

The exhibition highlights a few of the many innovations of photography as it evolved from the early days of the daguerreotype and salt print process, through the never-ending quest to discover better and faster methods of creating photographic images, to the digital age in which we now live.

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In Honorable Remembrance: Thomas L. Kane and the Latter-day Saints

February 20, 2009 – July 18, 2009

Wilford Woodruff wrote, “The name of Colonel Thomas L. Kane stands most prominent,… an instrument, in the hands of God, and inspired by him,…. Your name will of necessity stand associated with the history of this people for years to come, whatever may be their destiny.”

Among his many political, military, and philanthropic endeavors, prominent Philadelphian Thomas L. Kane became Brigham Young’s closest on-Mormon friend and confident. Kane was a mediator, counselor, and peace-maker, defending the Mormons through his influence in the media and Congress. This exhibit brings understanding to the life and varied contributions of this honored friend of the Mormons.

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Robert Burns and the Poetic Image

February 20, 2009 – December 31, 2009

Robert Burns’ knack for connecting with readers made him the virtual spokesperson for several publics, both from the moment he burst into public consciousness until the end of his life, and also in the centuries that followed. By the time of the Scottish literary renaissance in the 1920s and 1930s, the savviest critics no longer wrote solely about his poetry and life, but rather addressed Burns as a cultural phenomenon.

When we consider the multiple vocal registers of his work (Scots and English, sentimental and ribald, ironic and sincere, high and low), it becomes clear that Burns was a poet in and through whom multitudes spoke. This exhibition highlights the vital relationship between the poet, his work, and his image.

2008

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Two Ancient Roman Plates: Bronze Military Diplomas and Other Sealed Documents

January 1, 2008 – January 30, 2009

This exhibition features an extraordinary set of Roman military plates from AD 109. Bronze plates such as these, known as military diplomas, were used for granting Roman citizenship and military honors to retiring soldiers. These two plates were issued by imperial decree on October 14, AD109, during the rule of emperor Trajan in Rome. The plates are an excellent example of doubled (duplicated), sealed, witnessed documents. Also exhibited are coins and other metal objects from the first and second centuries AD which demonstrate the advanced skills and abilities of Roman metallurgists.

2005

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Remembering World War II: Pearl Harbor and Beyond

Fall 2005 – Spring 2006

Tom Brokaw called the military personnel of World War II “the greatest generation.” This exhibit invites contemplation of the freedoms we enjoy as a result of that generation’s sacrifice. Virtually every aspect of human experience was impacted by the war in some way. Families were separated, rationing of food and gasoline was introduced, and women assumed new roles. Stories and symbols of both heroes and those on the home front are featured in this exhibit which inspires reflection on our freedoms and helps prepare us for the challenges posed by present conflicts.

2004

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Looking Inward, Looking Outward: Japanese Representations of Self and Other

August 2004 – January 2005

Miniature wooden pagodas, printed scrolls dating from 767 AD, maps from the Tokugawa period (1600-1868), art, and beautifully illustrated books depict the Japanese perceptions of themselves and the outside world, and the changes in those perceptions over time. This exhibit portrays Japanese domestic life including the flourishing literary and cultural arts, work and play, war and religion, and the penchant Japanese artists and writers had for documenting daily life.

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To Tell the Tale: Preserving the Lives of Mormon Women

January 21, 2004 – June 4, 2004

Across two centuries, the women of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have preserved their experiences as sisters, mothers, Relief Society members, missionaries, artists, educators, politicians, and writers – at home, in the community and abroad.

Through diaries, reminiscences and biographies, letters, poetry, publications, oral histories, photographs, artifacts, and scraps of paper and fabric, this exhibit provides insight into the faith, struggles, triumphs and daily living of these LDS women and encourages all women to preserve their lives for future generations.

1998

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Anthem for Doomed Youth: Writers and Literature of the Great War, 1914-1918

September 1, 1998 – December 31, 1998

The First World War was a fissure that changed everything. In addition to nine million violent deaths and mutilations, the war exhausted treasuries and toppled monarchies. Even the arts would never be the same.

This exhibit of selected literature from the Great War commemorates the 80th anniversary of the Armistice that ended the war on November 11, 1918, and is dedicated to all who suffered in the Great War of 1914-1918. And especially to those who fought more than simply the war, the filth, the rats and lice; who also wrestled with an inadequately prepared language in order to leave us a new literature, a record of what it was like to step into the trenches of the 20th Century.

1995

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In Aedibus Aldi: The Legacy of Aldus Manutius and His Press

March 1995 – August 1995

With the invention of movable type in the mid-fifteenth century and the subsequent development of printing, it suddenly became possible to transmit ideas quickly to a widespread audience. Capitalizing on this innovation, Aldus Manutius and his heirs decisively influenced the subsequent course of printing through his development of the italic type and the smaller, more affordable, and more portable book format.

This exhibit celebrates the 500th anniversary of the first Aldine Press publication by highlighting a selection of books produced by the Aldine Press in the 15th and 16th centuries.