Marking the 500th Anniversary of the Death of Leonardo

Copperplate engraving from Trattato della Pittura di Lionardo da Vinci. Trato da un Codice della Biblioteca Vaticana e dedicato alla Maestá di Luigi XVIII Re di Francia e di Navarra (Rome: Stamperia de Romanis, 1817)

According to Giorgio Vasari’s biographies, The Lives of the Most Excellent Italian Architects, Painters, and Sculptors, Leonardo da Vinci died on May 2, 1519. As museums around the world are commemorating the 500th anniversary of the death of Leonardo with various exhibits, we would like to join the celebrations of Leonardo’s legacy by highlighting our copies of some early printed editions of his Trattato della Pittura (Treatise on Painting).

History in the Kitchen

Rectangular "Rose Cake" with orange icing from Malinda Russell's A Domestic Cook Book

Earlier this month, Special Collections was pleased to host WEMU news reporter Jorge Avellan as he researched a story for their "Hidden in Plain Sight" program, featuring Malinda Russell's A Domestic Cook Book. This unpreposessing little 39-page booklet in faded paper wrappers is one of the greatest treasures of the Janice Bluestein Longone Culinary Archive. Published in Paw Paw, Michigan in 1866, A Domestic Cook Book is the only known copy of the oldest known cookbook published...

The Alternative Press's Original Postcards

printed words "art in Detroit" with an ink drawing of a question mark running from a dark shape

What would you do with 500 blank postcards? For contributors to The Alternative Press, the answers varied. Some hand-wrote poetry on their cards. Some made images--by painting, drawing, collaging, or pasting photographs onto paper. Some embraced the postcard format, while others challenged it--for example, Carol Steen made all of her postcards in brass, a playful take on the form you could never actually use them to mail a message to a friend.

2017-2018 Annual Report

Special Collections Research Center Annual Report 2017-18

We are delighted to share our latest annual report, containing highlights from July 2017 to June 2018. Curious where items in our collections traveled for exhibition? Want to learn about a few of our most exciting acquisitions? Interested in what kinds of instruction sessions we do? You can find all that and more in this report.

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