Who, one might wonder, was C.V. Starr? More than one East Asian Library bears his name, including ours at Columbia. This new exhibition works to answer that question and offer information about the patron who championed both scholarship and a better understanding of Asia. His legacy lives on in The Starr Foundation, which awards grants in many areas, including Education, Medicine and Healthcare, Human Needs, Public Policy, Culture, and the Environment. Starr was committed to a better understanding of Asia, and this exhibition provides a historical exploration of his history and his relationship to Asia.
The East Asian Library worked with the Starr Foundation and with Robbie Blitz to use Omeka to put together the C.V. Starr, His Life and Work exhibition. The impetus for this exhibition came from The Starr Foundation, and Ria Koopmans-de Bruijn curated the presentation of the photographs and ephemera and the accompanying information. LDPD worked with the Starr Foundation and Koopmans-de Bruijn to create and import the metadata and upload the assets. Generally our exhibitions involve items that we own, but this exhibition is unusual in that the Starr Foundation provided all the content from their own collections, requiring that we identify the content as belonging to a private collection in the metadata. . We also worked to ensure that the attribution of the images was handled appropriately, that the exhibition “went live” without a hitch, and that the functionality, such as moving through the exhibition and enlarging of the items, worked smoothly.