Category Archives: Art & Design

You’re Invited: “I Mustache You to Read this Book”

In celebration of No Shave November, join VASA this Wednesday, November 18th at 12pm in the SVA Library to enjoy tea and coffee, while having your picture taken with beards and mustaches!

Post your photos to Instagram, and use the hashtag #VASAstache to publish your photos to the Library website – the top 3 most liked photos will win gift cards to the Strand:

1st prize: $25
2nd prize: $20
3rd prize: $15


SVA Library Book Sale, Nov. 18-20


Booksale Nov 2015 (1)

SVA students, faculty, and staff are invited to the SVA Library’s Fall Book Sale, taking place in the library from 10am-6pm on Wednesday, November 18th through Friday, November 20th, 2015.

We’ll be selling a wide range of books on art, design, criticism, and more. All books for sale will be under $20; payment by credit card only.

Trial Databases: Women’s Wear Daily & Women’s Magazine Archive

The SVA Library has just begun trial access to the Women’s Wear Daily Archive and the Women’s Magazine Archive from Proquest’s Fashion Studies package. These trials will be active through the end of the year, and can be accessed from our A-Z Databases page.

About Women’s Wear Daily:

A comprehensive archive of Women’s Wear Daily, from the first issue in 1910 to material from within the last twelve months, reproduced in high-resolution images. Every page, article, advertisement and cover has been included, with searchable text and indexing. The Women’s Wear Daily Archive preserves one of the fashion industry’s most influential reads. Key moments in the history of the industry, as well as major designers, brands, retailers and advertisers are all covered in this publication of record.

About Women’s Magazine Archive:

An archival research resource comprising the full backfiles of leading women’s interest consumer magazines. Titles are scanned from cover to cover in high-resolution color and feature detailed article-level indexing. Coverage ranges from the late-19th century through to 2005 and these key primary sources permit the examination of the events, trends, and attitudes of this period. Among the research fields served by this material are gender studies, social history, economics/marketing, media, fashion, politics, and popular culture. Titles in this database include Better Homes and Gardens, Good Housekeeping, and Ladies’ Home Journal.

Got a question about these trials? Ask Us!

SVA Library’s New Website

The SVA Library is excited to announce that we have just launched a brand new, redesigned website! It is linked from the library’s page on the college website (, and can be accessed directly at

new library website

The new website features a completely updated design, with illustrations by SVA alumnus, Donica Ida. Information about library collections, services, and spaces is easily accessible via the main header links and the four animated buttons beneath the search box. The focus on the new site is, of course, the search box itself. It is the discovery portal to all of the physical items in the library, as well as most of our subscription databases. Performing a search in the “Everything” tab will return results from our local Vision catalog as well as most of our databases; searches from the “Catalog” tab return results only from our local catalog, i.e. items that are physically held in the library.

Our new customized search results interface features a “Bento Box” display, with results categorized by item type. The first 5 results in each category are displayed; clicking “More Books,” “More Magazines,” etc., from the bottom of each box brings you to a complete, filtered list of all results for your search in that category.

search results

To access individual databases, click on the Databases button from the homepage; this will bring you to our A-Z list:

databases button

We hope you will find the new site friendly and easy to use. If you have questions about the new site, don’t hesitate to Ask Us.

Please send us your feedback at

Cabinet of Curiosities – Superhero Edition!

Crash! Bang! Pow!

The Cabinet of Curiosities – Superhero Edition is now open! If you haven’t noticed the display, it is located in the nook where the Reinhold Brown collection and underground comics live – right before the water fountain and picture collection area.


Each semester, library staff members work together to create a theme, curate, and decorate the cabinet.  Students and patrons are welcome to explore the cabinet and are encouraged to borrow any books they discover while peeking inside.

Come take a look!

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New books: Seeds of inspiration

As we come to the end of summer, the season of growing things, our new book shelf features monographs about three artists that derive their artistic inspiration from the natural world.

An added plus – one of these is an exhibition catalog from a show that is currently up at New York City’s own Bronx Botanic Garden until November 1, so if the work calls to you there’s the opportunity to see it in the flesh, so to speak.

F.K.s garden

Frida Kahlo’s Garden 

by Adriana Zavala

Accompanying the groundbreaking exhibition “Frida Kahlo: Art, Garden, Life” at The New York Botanical Garden, this vibrant book provides a thrilling new perspective from which to appreciate Frida Kahlo’s paintings against the backdrop of her home and garden. Frida Kahlo created a natural paradise in her home at the Casa Azul in Mexico City. The plants cultivated there were vital components of some of her most original work, and an important part of her fascination with indigenous Mexican history and culture. From early paintings dating from the 1920s to her last known work, Kahlo’s use of botanical imagery reflects not only a love of the natural world, but also an evolving iconography. By focusing attention on this aspect of her art and its relationship to her garden sanctuary, the book demonstrates how the natural world provided Kahlo with inspiration. In addition to dazzling full-page reproductions of Kahlo’s paintings and works on paper, the book also includes essays presenting Kahlo as an avid collector of artifacts, animals, books, and plants. Archival photos trace the evolution of the Casa Azul over the course of the artist’s lifetime. Additionally, it explores Mexican architecture, landscape design, and gardens of the early 20th century. Fans of botanical art, garden enthusiasts, and Kahlo’s many devotees will find new and exciting images and information in this elegant, unique presentation of one of modern art’s most revered figures.
See more pictures of the Botanic Garden’s exhibition Frida Kahlo: Art, Garden, Life.


Art and the biological sublime in the 21st century
Edited by Regine Rapp & Christian de Lutz
With 96 Color Photographs

This book provides a sustainable supplement to the [macro]biologies & [micro]biologies series which took place at Art Laboratory Berlin between 2013 and 2015. The whole programme consisted of four group shows, several seminars and talks on contemporary art and the life sciences. Four exhibitions – the biosphere, organisms, the bacterial sublime, and proteo – featured renowned international artists working across the borders between the arts and different fields of biology. Next to a theoretical reflection about the exhibited artists the publication also includes artist statements and documents a number of outstanding events from the series – workshops and seminars with artists, biologists, and scholars, discussing synthetic biology, speculative design, DIY Bio, and practical exercises in citizen science.

glass veil

The Glass Veil: Seven Adventures in Wonderland (Art – Knowledge – Theory)

by Suzanne Anker, Sabine Flach

Both authors of The Glass Veil are on the faculty here at SVA, Suzanne Anker is chair of the BFA Fine Arts department, and Sabine Flach teaches Art History in BFA Fine Arts.

In this collaborative work between artist and theorist Suzanne Anker and art historian Sabine Flach, the study of image production unveils the reality of pictures beyond their function as mere representations of the world. The visuals range from firsthand accounts of specimen collections in historical medical museums, to scientific research laboratories, to studies of plant propagation, among other themes concerning life forms and Bio Art. Focusing on systems of artistic knowledge, the authors demonstrate how context, scale and framing devices alter meaning in pictorial systems. Somatic responses, classification networks and image banks are explored as they relate to intersections in visual art and the biological sciences.

Library West Grand Opening Sept. 24, 2015

Stop by the Library West Grand Opening for prizes, cider and doughnuts, and take-aways! Explore the new space, hear about collections and services, meet library staff.

When: Thursday, Sept. 24th 11am – 12:30pm
Where: 133 West 21st Street, lower level, down the hall from Moe’s Café

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SVA Library West is an attractive new space created for students, faculty and staff who are based on that side of town. Plenty of resources and services are packed into this compact but attractive space. A selection of new books, DVDs, video games, and magazines are on display for you to browse or borrow. There are comfortable seats and café tables (yes, food and drink are permitted). A group study room equipped with flat screen monitor is available. Other useful hardware includes three desktop computers, a ScannX workstation, color copier, and black and white printer. Library staff are available to answer your questions and explain library resources. Consultations with librarians and library classes can be scheduled. Another great thing – you can request circulating items from the main SVA Library at 380 Second Avenue, and they’ll be delivered to you the very next day!

Hours are Monday through Friday, 12 noon to 8pm. You can reach Library West at 212-592-2810.