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Dear BGC Community,

Warmest greetings and happy fall!

If you haven’t seen our inaugural Study Collection exhibition What’s in A Number?, we invite you to stop by the Object Lab. This display features the ten most requested and used objects, ranging from a collection of 1950s Melmac “Boontonware” dishes designed by Belle Kogan (American, b. Russia, 1902–2000) to an eighteenth-century papboat by silversmith Jacob Hurd (American, 1703–1758).

We kicked off the semester with a workshop from donor Stephen Blank who has given a number of interesting objects to the Study Collection, including souvenir tableware featuring Queen Elizabeth II. Blank spoke with students about the large collection of outsider art he assembled with his late wife Lenore and their philosophy of collecting. Please join us for our next Object Lab event on Monday, November 7: a workshop with Emma Cormack and Michele Majer on lace in the Study Collection.

What’s in A Number? display. Object Lab.



As part of the Library’s DEAI initiatives, we’ve purchased a group of clothing patterns by renowned African American fashion designers for the Study Collection. These include creations by Willi Smith (American, 1948–1987), Stephen Burrows (American, b. 1943) and Patrick Kelly (1954–1990). The patterns have already proved quite popular and were used in the 2022 Summer School “Re-Dress and Re-Form” course and the Lab for Teen Thinkers program. Check out the Library’s current lace display on the second floor opposite the Reference Desk to see an example of Smith’s patterns!

Left: Collection of Dress / Clothing Patterns by African American Fashion Designers; 1970s and 1980s; fashion designers: Willi Smith (American, 1948-1987), Stephen Burrows (American, b. 1943) and Patrick Kelly (American, 1954-1990). Repository: Bard Graduate Center Study Collection (New York, New York, USA).

Right: MA student Allison Donoghue viewing the Willi Smith display. 


More than 60 pieces of majolica were given to the Study Collection at the closing of the Majolica Mania exhibition. Many items were not in the show and will be new to users. Some of the notable items include a foot-tall umbrella stand, a game pie dish, two “moss ground” vases, and a toby jug in the form of a policeman’s head. The objects are being processed and will be available soon on Artstor and Folio.

Left: Rustic Umbrella Stand; ca. 1882; Thomas Forester & Sons (British, act. 1877–ca 1959), manufacturer. Bard Graduate Center Study Collection (New York, New York, USA).

Right: BGC MA Student and Study Collection Fellow Josh Massey processing Majolica gift.

Selected new acquisitions include:

  • More than 50 pieces of ceramics and glass donated by Earl Martin
  • Collection of Swedish wooden toys, the majority by BRIO, donated by Earl Martin
  • Thirty-seven-piece set of Castleton China “Wisteria” dishes, shape designed by Eva Zeissel, donated by Earl Martin
  • Length of printed fabric with mod design, acquired by donor in 1970s, donated by Daryl Favor
  • Cheongsam, Japanese, 1950s–early 1960s, donated by Susan R. Schmaltz
  • Jane McCartney lace blouse, acquired by donor ca. 1974, donated by Helen Drutt English
  • Archive of 2-D work by glass / visual artist Sydney Cash, donated by Sydney Cash

Left: Four Lo Ball “Stockholm” glasses with gold decoration; shape designed by Eva Zeisel (Hungarian, 1906-2011), Federal Glass (American, act. 1900-1980), manufacturer. Bard Graduate Center Study Collection, Gift of Earl Martin.

Right: BGC MA Student Jane Ayers assisting with photographing with cheongsam.

Viewing Objects

The Study Collection is now fully open for object viewing and can be accessed most weekdays. Please contact for an appointment. Appointments can also be made  by contacting the library at