Printed: Might 4, 2022 by Laura Darlington
In April, the Artwork Libraries Society of North America (ARLIS/NA)
held their fiftieth annual convention in Chicago, and I had the
pleasure of attending and presenting because of the SJSU iSchool.
Final yr, I logged on to ARLIS/NA’s digital convention, but
after two years of distant studying and pandemic isolation, I felt
anticipating an in-person expertise.
I used to be thrilled to have my poster accepted for presentation on the
convention, and to obtain each the iSchool’s Journey Grant and
the ARLIS Southern California Chapter’s Pupil Journey Award –
collectively the 2 grants nearly completely lined my bills.
My enthusiasm was shortly neutralized by COVID anxiousness; I had not
been on an airplane since earlier than the pandemic, though
happily the masks mandate was nonetheless in impact after I flew. I
discovered it reassuring that ARLIS/NA required vaccinations and masks
to attend, plus Chicago has a fairly excessive vaccination charge.
The existence of ARLIS/NA and ArLiSNAP (a subgroup for Artwork
Library College students and New ARLIS Professionals) was first introduced
to my consideration in Maggie Murphy’s INFO-220 course, Visible
Assets Curation and Arts Librarianship. What an thrilling
discovery that there’s a corporation particularly for artwork
data professionals, the sector I’m hoping to affix. I used to be
delighted to lastly meet Professor Murphy in particular person on the
convention, and I enormously loved the 2 shows she gave.
Many of the classes I attended have been fascinating, and I absorbed
a lot, from new terminology, to new methods, to thoroughly new
methods of considering. It was tremendously helpful to listen to how
establishments in the actual world are placing into apply the
instruments and methodologies we’re studying about as college students. The
data I gained on the convention will improve my course work
in addition to my profession – that’s, if I can decipher my copious
As this was the fiftieth annual convention, an enthralling exhibit of
ARLIS/NA ephemera from previous conferences was exhibited to
have a good time the anniversary. I had enjoyable searching the artifacts and
listening to tales from the elders.
My poster was on digital collections, highlighting a venture I
spearheaded at my earlier job the place we revealed a hidden museum
assortment on-line. Whereas not as daunting as giving a presentation
over the microphone to a packed ballroom, presenting a poster to
individuals one- or two-at-a-time within the exhibit corridor was nonetheless
nerve-wracking, and I used to be not totally awake because of the time zone
distinction. Nonetheless, the attendees put me comfortable by participating in
pleasant dialogue; it was particularly useful to speak with these
who’d undertaken comparable tasks and evaluate notes.
Daily was a whirlwind of recent (albeit masked) faces and
data, so between classes I ceaselessly ducked into the
convention makerspace, which featured a number of shops for
artistic rejuvenation: a collaging desk, a collaborative zine
station, a weaving loom, a Cricut machine, and a VR headset.
The convention was situated downtown, inside strolling distance of
most of the metropolis’s cultural treasures. ARLIS/NA supplied free
admission to the Artwork Institute of Chicago and the Museum of
Up to date Artwork, and I additionally checked out the great Intuit
Heart for Outsider Artwork. A reception for first-time convention
attendees was held on the historic Chicago Cultural Heart, as soon as
the house of the central public library.
I met every kind of fascinating individuals from all around the world –
I’d be making small speak with the particular person subsequent to me solely to seek out
out they have been the top of a well-known establishment, or they’d a
cool job like a online game artwork librarian, or they have been nonetheless in
grad college, identical to me. Conferences are after all an opportunity to
community, but the connections I made felt real, not
I’m very grateful that I used to be in a position to attend the ARLIS/NA
convention, it was really an academic and optimistic expertise.
In case you are contemplating attending a convention as a pupil, I
advocate presenting a poster; it’s a low-pressure solution to dip
your toes within the water of knowledgeable group and be a part of
Editor’s Be aware: The SJSU iSchool extremely encourages college students to
attend skilled conferences but additionally realizes that it may be
price prohibitive. Journey grants can be found
to eligible college students to assist reduce the monetary burden and
enhance convention participation. iSchool pupil Laura
Darlington acquired one in every of these journey grants.