Since the release of the movie Monuments Men earlier this month, people have been abuzz with talk of the connections to the UW–Madison campus. “Our Monuments Men: UW’s Role in Rescuing Europe’s Treasures” is an exhibit devoted to the work of several important figures in the university’s history. The exhibit is currently on display in the lobby of Memorial Library and will run through February 28. Articles in the Wisconsin State Journal and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel have highlighted the exhibit and provided more information on the personal war stories of Wisconsin’s Monuments Men. The UW–Madison Archives Tumblr recently featured a series of articles on Gilbert Doane and Jesse Boell, two of the Monuments Men who had been UW–Madison archivists.
In addition to these resources, the Kohler Art Library has written an extensive Research Guide about art looting, destruction, and protection in World War II, including actions taken by Germany, Austria, the Soviet Union, Italy, and the United States. Technical services staff member at the Kohler Art Library, Kelly Tourdot (who has a bachelor’s degree in Art History) has had a fascination with the topic for some time and has read extensively on the subject. She became interested in creating the guide because of the UW–Madison connection, and thought it would be a great way to provide additional information to others whose interest may have been piqued by the movie.
Along with Kelly’s work, a number of library staff also provided input, including Art History faculty members Barbara Buenger and Gail Geiger who contributed syllabi and helpful suggestions for the guide. Linda Duychak (Reference Librarian at Kohler Art Library) said that while the subject has been covered by other institutions such as the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, “this was an opportunity to put a local focus on the guide.” Linda explained that “it was difficult, with all the interesting tangential information, to keep the guide focused on the Monuments Men and the protection efforts; but for those with an even deeper interest in the topic, the library and library website have other excellent resources.”
Click here to explore the research guide, “Art looting, destruction, and protection during World War II.” It can also be found through the Library website by clicking “Research Guides” under “Getting Started” on the right hand side. Browse for it under “Art/ Art History/ Architecture” or search for it by title.
Questions about the guide? Contact Linda Duychak at firstname.lastname@example.org