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Throughout the month of March (aka Women's History Month), we're celebrating RISD's founding and the women responsible for its origins and continued growth. Included in the latter are women who both learned from and later gave back in different ways to RISD. In this edition of See Also, we're putting a spotlight on two in particular -- Nancy Elizabeth Prophet (Class of 1918) and Estera Milman (Class of 1970) -- and point below to library resources, here at Fleet and at peer institutions, that help us to better understand their lives and careers and the impact they had on our world. 
 
For an expansive array of other resources on women artists, we also provide instructions on how to access RISD's subscription to Artstor, an online library of more than 2 million images in the arts, architecture, humanities, and sciences. Our staff pick leads us to resources on activist Dolores Huerta. And, finally, there are several new titles devoted to women artists in our brand new "New Books" shelf on the Fleet Library website.

Enjoy and see you again on Founders Day
 
Margot McIlwain Nishimura
Dean of Libraries
 
P.S. Fleet Library is open to the RISD community near and far; information about hours and services can be found here. To see spring semester information for all the academic support offices at RISD in one place, please visit the recently updated pages on covid.risd.edu.
NEW TO THE LIBRARY WEBSITE -- A VIRTUAL "NEW BOOKS" SHELF
Missing being able to browse the "New Books" shelf in person? Now you can check out our latest acquisitions from the comfort of your own home through the "New Books" page on the Fleet Library website. Physical books are the focus for now (all of which can be requested through contactless pick-up -- for anyone on campus this semester). New DVDs and ebooks will be included as the page grows. Link to the page here or from the lower section of library.risd.edu (see "NEW BOOKS" under "COLLECTIONS").
NANCY ELIZABETH PROPHET
American sculptor Nancy Elizabeth Prophet (1890-1960) was the first woman of color to graduate from RISD, in 1918. While we have several of her sculptures in the RISD Museum and books about her and her work in Fleet Library, Rhode Island College holds the largest collection of historic photos of Prophet and her work, and Brown University's Hay Library has her diary from 1922-1934, when she was studying and working in France before returning to the States to teach at Spelman College (1934-1944). The diary has been fully digitized and can be explored online here. It served recently as a touchstone for Simone Leigh's contribution to the RISD Museum's Raid the Icebox Now exhibition and publication, which also included Prophet's sculpture "Silence" (see below) from the museum's collection. 

Images: (Left) Nancy Elizabeth Prophet, undated (ca. 1932). Rhode Island College, Nancy Elizabeth Prophet Collection; (right) Nancy Elizabeth Prophet, "Silence," 1920s. RISD Museum, gift of Miss Ellen D. Sharpe.
REMEMBERING ALUMNA ESTERA MILMAN: ART HISTORIAN, CURATOR, RESEARCHER OF THE AVANTE-GARDE
Estera Milman received her BFA at RISD in 1970 in Painting/Printmaking and Film. In early February we received the sad news that she had passed away, in Boston, on January 27. Library staff had learned about Estera's visionary contributions to the study of alternative art movements of the later twentieth-century in December 2018 when her health was failing, and her daughters, Mica and Nira Pollock, had asked if Fleet Library might be interested in a selection from her comprehensive library on this topic. Our visit to meet with them at Estera's house in New London, CT, led us to a day-long encounter with books and ephemera on and by many of the greats of Dada, Fluxus, No!Art, and other post-WWII avante-garde art movements. There was also an archive of correspondence and notes compiled by Estera in the course of founding Alternative Traditions in the Contemporary Arts (ATCA) at the University of Iowa. We were delighted to advise on the placement of the library and archives and honored to receive a selection of Estera's books for Fleet Library, which we hold in memory and celebration of her life and achievements. 

We encourage you to read remembrances of Estera here and here, to explore how she "pushed ideas of art and space beyond the museum walls" on her “inter/arts” website, and to browse the selection of her books now available to the RISD community.


Images: Estera Milman, Providence, May 2005 (with thanks to Mica and Nira Pollock), and two of her books now in the library collection. 
STAFF PICK: DELORES HUERTA
In honor of Women's History Month, Anne Butler, of our Visual + Material Resource Center has directed us to Dolores Huerta, a community activist in the fight to bring justice and dignity to agricultural laborers, and cofounder of the National Farm Workers' Association (NFWA), which became the United Farm Workers' Union (UFW). Huerta, awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012, coined the slogan, Sí, Se Puede (Yes, We Can). Now in her nineties, Huerta continues her community work today. To learn more, check out the DVD Dolores, and Jose Montoya's Abundant Harvest, a book of nearly 2,000 drawings along with paintings, poems, sketchbooks, video footage, music, and other ephemera. Both are available via contactless pickup.
WOMEN ARTISTS ON ARTSTOR
Artstor, accessible from on campus or off, using the VPN, offers opportunities to explore women's history and women artists.  The Artstor homepage features "Witnessing Women's History", and in the bottom left corner, a click on "Teaching Resources" will bring you to "Artstor Curated". Type "Women Artists" into the search box, and three pages of results appear, including an image group of works by Kara Walker, who uses the silhouette and the cyclorama to create powerful statements about America’s antebellum history. The image below is from Freedom A Fable, an artists' book created by Walker in 1997.
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