The collection materials span more than 100 years of history (1852-1967) associated with the Rochester Athenaeum and Mechanics Institute and the Rochester Institute of Technology from these two families who have held long ties to the university and its predecessors. Of interest is the material pertaining to the Wiltsie Watercolor Prize, established by Charles H. Wiltsie, who served as a trustee for RAMI from 1892 until 1914. The award was given annually from 1892-1943.
This collection consists of the research files compiled and used by Harry Lang when writing his book, Teaching From the Heart and Soul: The Life and Work of Robert F. Panara. Born and raised in the Bronx, Robert Panara lost his hearing to spinal meningitis in 1931, at the age of ten. In 1967, he was hired by NTID where, for the next twenty years, Panara educated not only his students, but also the world about literature, poetry, and communication.
Mary Anne Cross was an Art and Design student at the Rochester Institute of Technology. Her design skill was acknowledged by RIT’s adoption of her logo design for the university’s official seal from 1956 to 1966. In fact, it was Mary Anne who first utilized the dots between the three letters in the acronym RIT. Even though the university changed logos again in 1966, Mary Anne’s influence on the aesthetics of the logo remain. Just take a peek at the seal she created in this exhibit to see the similarities with our present day logo.
Barbara "Barbi" Brill graduated as the only female photography major of her class in 1957. On exhibit is her first year photography assignment booklet which offers a glimpse into her life and her photography education at RIT. The techniques, assignments, and results create interesting comparisons to today’s photography education. The rigorous grading and assignments tested the first year students, much like classes do today. Having a look into Brill’s educational experience is gratifying and also informative to current RIT photography students.
A success in his field, Robert C. Bagby (1896-1972) traveled around the world helping to shoot advertisements for various companies and organizations. Awarded the title of "Fellow" in the Royal Photographic Society of Great Britain in 1948, by 1953, he closed his firm in New York City and accepted a position at RIT in the university's School of Photography. To our twenty-first-century eyes, Bagby's photography seems to reveal much about the society, culture, and stereotypes of our Western world in regard to the "other."
Born in Manlius, NY, Liz Dopp came to RIT in 1979 to study business administration and to play hockey. During her four years of play, she served as assistant captain during the 1982-1983 season. However, during her junior year, Liz and her fellow teammates (and their parents) took RIT to task regarding the marginalization of female athletes and teams, specifically the women’s hockey team.
This collection looks at the life and work of Ruth E. Gutfrucht, a professor of design at RIT from 1947-1981. The collection contains copy prints of Gutfrucht's calligraphy and publications that included her design work as well as examples of work created by her students.
In 2015 archives across the United States are sharing examples from their collections that specifically give voice to people who have a unique, surprising or compelling story to tell. RIT Archive Collections, encompassing the RIT Archives, The University Art Collection and the RIT/NTID Deaf Studies Archive, exists to document the history of the university but what is RIT’s history if not the stories of all the individuals who have worked and studied here? This exhibit taps into the collections to display records that reveal this human side of RIT’s history. We hope you enjoy the diversity of voices.
During the Fall 2015, Museum Studies students from the College of Liberal Arts worked with RIT’s Archivist, Becky Simmons, and Associate Archivist, Jody Sidlauskas, to curate a second exhibition on the theme "The Stories They Tell." Over five weeks, students in Prof. Juilee Decker's Cultural Informatics course examined the collections, selected items, wrote exhibit labels, installed the works, and prepared an online exhibition. We hope you enjoy The Stories They Tell 2.