There’s never a bad day for Southern Californians to get in touch with their region’s history — but none’s better than Oct. 17, when the USC Libraries host the 10th annual Los Angeles Archives Bazaar. Experts from 89 archives will be on hand from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Doheny Memorial Library to show off rare artifacts and bring to light stories from local communities.
The all-day event is presented by LA as Subject, an alliance of archives and collections dedicated to preserving, archiving and sharing the history and culture of the Los Angeles region.
The region’s vibrant diversity is reflected in LA as Subject’s membership roll — and in the list of Archives Bazaar exhibitors. Community groups such as the Little Tokyo Historical Society are represented. So are arts practitioners (Lauren Bon and the Metabolic Studio); private collections (Baseball Reliquary); official repositories (Orange County Archives); and research libraries (Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences).
This year, the bazaar celebrates a little history of its own, as its annual occurrence coincides with the 20th anniversary of LA as Subject, which the Getty Research Institute launched in 1995 to identify and catalogue lesser-known archives.
Sharing regional history
Hosted by the USC Libraries since 2000, LA as Subject currently sponsors a robust program aimed at preserving and sharing the history of the Los Angeles region, from its media partnership with KCETLink to its residency program that pairs young library professionals with community archives. And its annual Archives Bazaar — first organized in 2006 to connect researchers with the unique collections of LA as Subject members — has blossomed into LA’s premier daylong celebration of its rich and diverse history.
To mark these milestones, California State Librarian Greg Lucas headlines the Archives Bazaar’s series of educational and entertaining programming. In a conversation with KCETLink senior vice president Juan Devis, Lucas will discuss how libraries can embrace the Golden State’s reputation for creativity through inventive, collaborative uses of library collections.
Visitors to the bazaar can also explore their own visions for LA’s future through L.A.T.B.D., an exhibition and art installation curated by architecture writer and USC Libraries Discovery Fellow Geoff Manaugh.
Other programming highlights include preservation workshops; a presentation on LA’s long-standing thirst for intoxicating beverages; a panel discussion among contributors to a new anthology from Heyday Books, “LAtitudes: An Angeleno’s Atlas”; and a preview of the public television series Lost LA, a joint production of KCETLink and the USC Libraries that brings LA as Subject member collections to the screen.