2019–20 Mellon Postdoctoral Scholar Appointed

Will advance museum and library research collaborations at the UO

portrait of Ben Gillespie
Mellon Postdoctoral Scholar Ben Gillespie

The University of Oregon GLAM Alliance, which consists of the UO Libraries and Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art (JSMA), is pleased to announce the appointment of Ben Gillespie as the new Mellon Postdoctoral Scholar. Gillespie’s position is funded by a grant awarded to the University Oregon by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

An art historian with a strong interest in cross-disciplinary collaboration and digital curation, Gillespie brings to the position significant experience working with museum and archival collections at Johns Hopkins University Library and the Denver Art Museum. He earned his PhD in the Humanities Center and History of Art at Johns Hopkins University, his MA in Humanities from the University of Chicago, his Graduate Certificate in Book Publishing from University of Denver, and his BA in English from University of Georgia Honors College.

Previously, he served as editorial assistant for Modern Language Notes, where he edited articles and reviews, queried authors, secured rights, and designed covers and pages. As a graduate student, Gillespie was the coordinator for the Hopkins History Project at the Johns Hopkins University Library where he collected oral histories, interviews, and artifacts for the archives and designed physical and digital exhibitions. As the Herbert Bayer Archive Manager at the Denver Art Museum, he managed and digitized a 10,000+ object archive, researched and liaised with scholars, and assisted in exhibition design.

"I am eager to work with the GLAM alliance at the UO to advance innovative projects that will serve the Eugene community and beyond," said Gillespie. "There is a wonderful team here and I hope my cross-disciplinary background will facilitate collaborations between the Libraries and JSMA for years to come."

The Mellon Fellowships are part of an initiative funded by a $300,000 grant award from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support enhanced collaboration among campus libraries and museums, and to encourage increased use of library/museum assets in research, teaching and learning. In 2018 the award, which leverages an additional $150,000 from the University, launched a new program led by the UO Libraries and the JSMA.

"We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Gillespie to our project team," said Franny Gaede, head of Digital Scholarship Services with the UO Libraries. "His experience working across disciplines, in libraries and in museums will be a tremendous asset. His background in everyhing from poetry to project management will inform a variety of projects we will be tackling this year."

Gillespie will be assisted by graduate employees Tom Fischer, who returns to the program after working on the 2018-19 projects, and Aqsa Khalia Khan, who has joined the team this year.

About The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Founded in 1969, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation endeavors to strengthen, promote, and, where necessary, defend the contributions of the humanities and the arts to human flourishing and to the well-being of diverse and democratic societies by supporting exemplary institutions of higher education and culture as they renew and provide access to an invaluable heritage of ambitious, path-breaking work.