Tuesday, September 5, 2023

This summer, supported by a fellowship from the UI Libraries Digital Scholarship & Publishing Studio, 3rd year MFA candidate Luke Allan conducted research towards his thesis project. Allan seeks to bring back into print the work of a brilliant but forgotten Midwestern poet, Mary Ellen Solt. A UICB travel grant enabled him to spend time in Solt’s archives in Bloomington, Indiana. Luke also spent a period of time conducting research into manuscript and incunable copies of the Icelandic sagas, supported by a Stanley Award, looking in particular at scribal and typographic representations of the Völsunga saga. 

With the support of a Graduate College Summer Fellowship, 2nd year MFA candidate Jessie Kramer, conducted research into human-powered flight. Her findings will inform a series of artist books called “Flight Books," exploring the social, technological, and collective narrative consequences of the invention of the airplane.

In her work, she visited the site of the Wright Brother’s former home in Cedar Rapids, now a Pepsi plant, and read the extensive diaries of their father, Bishop Wright, a religious leader. She also tested the possibilities for using cloth in making this series of books, exploring how the touch and mechanics of textiles can lead readers through a cloth book's content.