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CONTACT: MELVIN O. SHAW
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0010; fax (319) 384-0024
E-mail: melvin-shaw@uiowa.edu

Release: Immediate

UI Libraries exhibition showcases the preservation of information over last 10 millennia

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- "Keeping our Word: Preserving Information Across the Ages," a new exhibition by the University of Iowa Libraries explores the long history of information preservation and the efforts made to save a record of our cultural heritage over the past 10 millennia. The exhibition opens October 1998 and runs through January 1999 in the North Exhibition Hall of the Main Library.

"Keeping our Word" examines how information that has emerged from stone to paper and later to electronic media has been saved over time. A selective survey of important events from the development of 8,000-year-old cuneiform writing to the recent evolution of digital information will be on display. Additionally, a portion of the exhibition will include a look at the evolution of libraries and archives.

The exhibition focuses on new and not-so-new preservation challenges, including an examination of paper's durability and emerging technologies that are used for preservation.

"Our recent access to digital information has led many to the mistaken assumption that it solves the preservation challenge or that information in paper format now has very limited usefulness," says Regina Sinclair, UI preservation librarian.

There will be a free screening of two videos on the subject of information preservation in the Shambaugh Auditorium at the Main Library on Tuesday, Nov. 10. "Slow Fires" will be shown from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. and "Into the Future" will be shown from 3:45 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. The public is invited to attend the screenings.

The exhibition was curated by UI Libraries staff Lissa Lord, Bob Joly, Kathryn Neal, Karen Zimmerman, Regina Sinclair and Rijn Templeton.

"Keeping our Word: Preserving Information Across the Ages" can be toured online by visiting the UI Libraries' website at http://www.lib.uiowa.edu/ref/exhibit

For additional information contact the UI Libraries at (319) 335-5867.

9/25/98