collecting autographs

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The influence that the classics have had on the world is timeless. In MU’s Special Collections and Rare Books department, there are a variety of texts that have been translated and transmitted in order to carry so many of these classical stories through time. This has enabled artists and authors alike to be inspired by these texts and give their own interpretations to the stories.

A perfect example of this and one of my personal favorites from our signature collection is our copy of Aristophanes’ Lysistrata. Published in 1934 by the Limited Edition’s Club and translated by Gilbert Seldes, this particular edition is illustrated by none other than Pablo Picasso.

The Limited Editions Club, founded by George Macy in 1929, was a publishing company whose goal was to give classical literature a new spin with limited illustrated editions. Macy hired many illustrators and artists of the time to participate in his projects such as: Arthur Szyk, Edmund Dulac, Thomas Hart Benton, Henri Matisse, and of course Pablo Picasso.

With fifteen hundred copies printed, Lysistrata is one of the more popular books published during Macy’s time containing not only Picasso’s illustrations but also his signature. The illustrations include six original etchings along with thirty-four line block reproductions of his work, and is the only example of an American publication of any of Picasso’s original etchings.

Macy had the following to say about Picasso’s work for Lysistrata:

“To illustrate Lysistrata, Picasso has given us six etched copperplates and forty pencil drawings. Each plate, each drawing, bears witness to his mastery of method and technique. His line is sure, confident; it cries out to the world that the man who drew it knows what he was about. And the line is pure, it is that sort of line of which even the Greeks used to say that this is “pure Grecian line.”

An artist from Malaga, Spain, Picasso created beautiful pieces reflecting many different styles. Though he is often remembered as an abstract artist and one of the founders of cubism, the time between the years 1918 and 1927 was deemed his “classical period”. During this time, he created works such as “Three Women at the Spring” (1921) and “The Pipes of Pan” (1923). A truly remarkable artist both of his time and still today. His contribution to this particular edition makes it a rarity worth checking out!

- Kayla T.

Lysistrata / by Aristophanes ; a new version by Gilbert Seldes ; with a special introduction by Mr. Seldes ; and illustrations by Pablo Picasso. New York : The Limited Editions Club, 1934. MU Ellis Special Collections Rare Vault PA3877 .L8 1934

Usuk -Crowd AU

So I went to Disney World the last week of 2016 and while I was there, I had a lot of time to think up silly AU’s while waiting in line and one of my favorites was this crowd au. 

Basically, both Alfred and Arthur are visiting Disney World during it’s busiest time the week after Christmas and before New Years. Alfred is visiting with his brother Matthew, and they’re trying to ride as many rides as possible while Arthur who’s visiting with Kiku are working to meet as many characters as possible collecting autographs. During the course of the week, Alfred and Arthur keep running into each other and every time they do it’s due to some crowd activity: waiting in line for a ride, human traffic jams while traveling to their respected fast passes events, end up getting  smushed to the side to make room for one of the Disney parades. Fireworks show, etc. 

Each time they meet Alfred starts to chat up Arthur and they get to know each other / get crushes on each other long story short they meet up on their last night of their trip at the fireworks show at Magic Kingdom and confess and share a kiss.

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My signed Shakespeare, updated :)

“Pan kept a Lucite cube atop the upright piano in his home, displaying two dance slippers–one of Astaire’s and one of Rogers’.” – from a September 1990 article in the Los Angeles Times, which describes how Hermes Pan kept one of Fred’s and one of Ginger’s shoes joined together in his home for over 40 years.

I met Harry Shum Jr. in a mall near my house on Mother’s Day. It was a few years ago and my family had gone out to see the movie Soul Surfer. We were just coming out of the movie when I saw a sign for a meet and greet with Mike Chang from Glee and I was beyond excited because my little mind was like ooh famous person! So I went to go get in line to get Harry’s autograph.

Basically he was the cutest lil bean on the planet and he was super nice and asked me what my name was and thanked me for watching Glee and was giving all of the mothers at the meet and greet flowers. No literally as I was collecting my autograph and leaving he stopped me and gave me a rose and said “Give this to your mom, okay?” and it was so freaking sweet and every time I think about how I met this wonderful man and how now he’s a main character on a popular TV show and is getting recognition for his acting skills and his role and is playing one of my favorite characters of all time and is such an inspiration I get so emotional

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After seeing Bewteen the Buried and Me for the second time, I have now completed my signed discography of theirs! (Most of these (all but 3) have multiple LPs, I just didn’t feel like taking both out for them all)