October 23, 2017 Swann Foundation Announces Award Fellowships for 2017-2018

Press Contact: Sheryl Cannady (202) 707-6456
Public Contact: Martha Kennedy (202) 707-9115

The Caroline and Erwin Swann Foundation for Caricature and Cartoon, administered by the Library of Congress, is awarding fellowships to four applicants for the academic year 2017-2018. Recipients are affiliated with Fordham, Boston and Cornell universities and The Graduate Center at New York University.

Olivia Badoi, a doctoral candidate in English at Fordham University, is investigating the relationships among the genres of the woodcut novel, the graphic novel and the modernist novel in her dissertation. She contends that considering these art forms in relation to one another will alter our understanding of both modernist and contemporary fiction and visual culture. She will study works in the Library's Prints and Photographs Division, including wood engravings and blocks for “Prelude to a Million Years” by Lynd Ward, “Karl Marx’s Capital in Pictures” by Hugo Gellert and scratchboard drawings for “Flood! A Novel in Pictures” by Eric Drooker in order to explore the intersection of visual and literary storytelling. She also plans to examine examples of earlier illustrated sequential narratives held in the the Library's Rare Book and Special Collections Division.

Kelsey Gustin, a doctoral candidate in the history of art and architecture at Boston University, studies depictions of the immigrant working class in turn-of-the-century New York as a visual culture constructed by and for an urban middle class. From her research so far, she finds that such imagery, which encompasses fine art, photography and political cartoons, reveals how artists rendered perceived threats of capitalism through styles of realism. Gustin will focus on the political cartoons by Annie “Lou” Rogers in the full set of Birth Control Review—a magazine that ran from 1917-1970—in addition to the Margaret Sanger Papers and social realist cartoons at the Library.

Asli Menevse, a doctoral candidate in the history of art at Cornell University, analyzes depictions of monuments in late 19th-century caricatures from Europe and America in her dissertation. Approaching these works as translations of an authoritarian mode of representation, she proposes that these caricatures stem from critical engagement with the inherent qualities of the monuments, which are magnified visually in works on paper through such stylistic treatments as the grotesque and carnivalesque. She will survey and study collections that focus on the Siege of Paris and the Franco-Prussian War, selections from Library cartoon collections and radical periodicals in order to recover visions of commemoration that counter official forms of recognition.

Erika Nelson Pazian, a doctoral candidate in the history of art at the Graduate Center at New York University, examines the visual culture of the Mexican War (1846-1848) in order to better understand how citizens in both warring nations viewed themselves, their enemy and their countries. She will analyze cartoons and caricatures relating to the war, in addition to surveying satiric periodicals, comic and military lithographs and sheet music in the Library. She argues that despite the vastly different circumstances of each nation in the years before the conflict, the need to unite citizens behind their government and military led creators of visual culture in both nations to adopt similar visual strategies to foster a sense of national identity.

During the coming academic year, the four recipients will conduct research at the Library, in the general collections and in the Prints and Photographs, Serial and Government Publications and Rare Book and Special Collections divisions.

New York advertising executive Erwin Swann (1906-1973) established the Swann Foundation for Caricature and Cartoon in 1967. An avid collector, Swann assembled a large group of original drawings by over 500 artists, spanning two centuries, which his estate bequeathed to the Library of Congress in the 1970s. Swann’s original purpose was to build a collection of original drawings by significant creators of humorous and satiric art and to encourage the study of original cartoon and caricature drawings as works of art. The foundation’s support of research and academic publication is carried out, in part, through a program of fellowships.

The Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division holds more than 15 million photographs, drawings and prints from the 15th century to the present day. International in scope, these visual collections represent a rich array of human experience, knowledge, creativity and achievement, touching on almost every realm of endeavor—science, art, invention, government and political struggle, and the recording of history. For more information, visit loc.gov/rr/print/.

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States—and extensive materials from around the world—both on-site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office. Explore collections, reference services and other programs and plan a visit at loc.gov; access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at congress.gov; and register creative works of authorship at copyright.gov.

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PR 17-156
2017-10-23
ISSN 0731-3527