The Makeup Question

Christian Dior Lipstick ad
Photo credit: Flickr

For those of you in the New York area, you may be aware that the above question has been circulating amongst the librarian crowd for the past month. It all started when METRO, the Metropolitan New York Library Council (a great resource for librarians in and around New York City), posted this article.

In it,  Ellen Mehling, the Career Services Consultant at METRO, addressed whether or not women should wear makeup to an interview…even if they do not normally do so. The awesome blog Librarian Wardrobe responded with an excellent post a few days later, and I personally came across this debate when the New York chapter of ARLIS tweeted about it early last month.

Full disclosure, I hold a very similar opinion to the one espoused in the post on Librarian Wardrobe, but I was very interested to see what my fellow ArLiSNAPpers thought about the subject. I feel like the world of  art librarianship stands somewhat apart from the rest of the librarian community, partly because we deal with different subject matter, but also because we tend to hold roles outside of the typical brick and mortar library, at art galleries, museums, artists’ personal collection, etc.. As a result, I believe the expectations for “proper office attire” (makeup included), are somewhat tempered, if not entirely altered.

Anyway, definitely curious to hear your guys’ opinions on the matter. Let me know!!

ARLIS/NA 43rd Annual Conference: Some Thoughts

Another ARLIS/NA Conference has come and gone; Art Librarians from not only North America, but from around the globe, congregated in Fort Worth, Texas last week to discuss current trends and issues in our niche field of librarianship, debate the future of art books and bibliography in the wake of e-publishing, and just generally mingle with one another. Unlike past years, however, this year I got to count myself as one of the conference’s many attendees. That’s right, folks, I actually had the opportunity to attend our parent organization’s annual conference, and I’ve got the tote bags to prove it…I know, you’re all very happy for me.

So I went to the conference really hoping to come away with concepts to implement in my own workplace, and although there were some very interesting presentations, the truth is that many of the topics discussed were not all that applicable to my niche within a niche library.  As someone who works in the private sector, an art gallery to be exact, something like library programming, while important to many art libraries, is not something that works, or is necessary, for a corporate art library.

Yet despite this, what some might call, failing, I still feel as though I got a lot out of my time at ARLIS/NA. I walked away with a large number of resources previously unknown (to me) from which the users of my library will definitely benefit, such as the Art Discovery Group Catalogue (ADGC), the first discipline-specific view of WorldCat records, and I cannot wait to introduce my users to this, as well as many other cool new tools.

Of course, conferences are also about networking, which is especially important for those of us new to the art library world, either as students or as new professionals. I met some really great people and had some interesting conversations. Of particular note to me was a fascinating conversation about how to deal with post-it notes in books when the person who put them there has the authority to request that said post-its remain in perpetuity…yeah, that’s a thing that happens in private libraries. Anyway, the short answer is: try to explain that post-its are the mortal enemy of books, but the long answer is, try to come up with alternatives for your users, even if it means you may have to take on more work.

So that was my first ARLIS/NA conference-going experience, and I think it rather rocked. How about you guys? Did you go? If so, how was it? Any cool takeaways?

Let the knowledge sharing continue!

Some good resources from the ARLIS/NA 43rd Annual Conference:

Art Discovery Group Catalogue (ADGC) – http://artlibraries.worldcat.org/

Getty Research Portal – http://portal.getty.edu/portal/landing

A/V Artifact Atlas (AVAA) – http://avaa.bavc.org/artifactatlas/index.php/A/V_Artifact_Atlas

Quality Control Tools for Video Preservation (QC Tools) – http://www.bavc.org/qctools