On the Trail of the Monarch Butterfly Exhibit

Produced by the Canada Aviation and Space Museum in collaboration with the Embassy of Mexico, this travelling exhibition on display on the main floor in the Library, exemplifies true teamwork, both in its creation and in its story.

Through microphotographic images and spectacular aerial photographs, Mexican filmmaker and pilot Francisco “Vico” Gutiérrez follow the monarch’s amazing journey from Montreal, Canada, to the mountains of central Mexico. In his ultralight, decorated with the motif of the monarch butterfly and aptly named Papalotzin (the Aztec word for “small butterfly”), he covered over 6,000 kilometres in 90 hours of flight over 72 days.

Vico’s adventure to raise awareness about butterfly habitat conservation became a true voyage of discovery as he followed the extreme challenges faced by monarch butterflies during their annual migration. With a lifespan of only about two months, no one monarch can complete the entire trip on its own — it takes up to four generations of these beautiful creatures to cover the entire distance of the migration.

Butterflies and Books

We will also be featuring books from the Library’s collection featuring butterflies or inspired by butterflies. Poetry and prose that use the butterfly as a symbol are included. Vladimir Nabokov’s lifelong interest in butterfly collecting is also highlighted.

The World Remembers exhibit

Come see The World Remembers, the most recent exhibit launched by the Library Exhibits Committee. Situated on the main floor, this exhibit pays tribute to those who were killed or died in the First World War, including solders, nurses and military personnel from 16 countries.

In addition to the educational panels, the televisions screen that accompanies the exhibit will broadcast the names of the 1,003,167 people who were killed in 1918 – the deadliest year of the war.

The World Remembers exhibit will run until November 11.

See the poster competition winners from Data Day 2018

Hosted by the Institute for Data Science, Data Day is an annual conference that celebrates the latest developments in data science and analytics research within Carleton University, the local community and Canada. The event includes presentations by Carleton researchers, government and industry experts, keynote addresses, and panel discussions. In addition, there was a speed networking session where Carleton students were able to meet and network with industry. Running concurrently was a poster competition to showcase graduate student research in data science and analytics across all disciplines.

The posters displayed on the main floor in the Library are the winners from the poster competition and showcase the many ways data science and analytics impacts our lives.

For more information: https://carleton.ca/cuids

Children's Maps of the World

Don’t miss a selection of children’s map drawings from the Barbara Petchenik biennial map competition, located in the South Wing Hallway of the Library until May.  This competition was created by the International Cartographic Association (ICA) in 1993 and aims to promote the creative representation of the world in graphic form by children. Each year, winners from around the world are selected and announced at the ICA conference and are later archived by the library. For more information: https://childrensmaps.library.carleton.ca/content/about-us

‘To What Degree?’ Photo Display

MacOdrum Library is pleased to welcome the travelling photo Display: “To What Degree? Canada in a Changing Climate.” Created in partnership with the Government of Canada and Canadian Geographic, this display tells of the unique ways that people and ecosystems within Canada are adapting to our changing climate. By using compelling photography and minimal text, these stories explore individual and community resilience in the face of extreme events. Even in the face of heat, storms, wildfires, and changes in livelihood due to habitat shifts, possibilities still exist for improved quality of life. Enjoy the display in the Alumni Reading Room, located on the main floor of the library until mid-April.

Exhibit: Metropolitan Nomads

Using photography and an ethnographic approach, the library’s newest exhibit Metropolitan Nomads: A Journey through Joburg’s Little Mogadishu takes an intimate look at the everyday life of Somali migrants in Johannesburg, where collective stories of migration and survival interweave with the individual desires and hopes of seeking a better life outside a country shattered by decades of internal conflict.

Metropolitan Nomads is a collaborative project between researcher Nereida Ripero-Muriiz and documentary photographer Salym Fayad. It is located on the gallery wall on the main floor of the library until mid-April.

Staff Picks

Take a break from studying and check out the library ‘staff picks’ personal book collection, currently on display on the main floor of the library near the Help desk. It showcases many books from personal collections giving you an opportunity to learn about our collecting interests, and gives library staff an opportunity to share collections that would otherwise stay neatly stacked on our bookshelves at home. Enjoy!

Holiday Book Tree

What does it take to build a holiday book tree you ask? About 2,500 – 3,000 library books, and at least 2 ½ hours of relentless stacking. All sizes of books (officially discarded from the library collection) are used and stacked on an inward slant against a core of 3 or 4 boxes full of books. Bibliophiles love it and staff view it as a unique challenge to get into the festive spirit. We now have not one, but two holiday books trees - all lit up for your enjoyment!

Geography Awareness Week

Join the annual worldwide celebration of geography as MacOdrum Library hosts Geography Awareness Week from Nov. 13 – 17th on the main floor of the library. This year’s theme is Indigenous Rights and Reconciliation. Faculty members will be on hand during the week to answer questions about the geography programs offered here at Carleton. Learn how drones are used by geographers and see them on display with other field research tools. In addition, students are invited to participate in a Human Library with Natural Resources Canada. Three ‘human’ books are available for a 20 minute conversation throughout the week. Visit the Natural Resources Canada website: https://www.nrcan.gc.ca/20208 to meet the three experts in the geospatial field of research and sign up for a conversation about their career choices and opportunities in the field of geography.

Terra Art International

The 8th edition of the Latin American Art Exhibition known as ‘Terra Art International’ is now on display on the Gallery wall and the South Wing Hallway (formerly Interlibrary Loans corridor) of the Library. This wonderful display of colourful, original art pieces of the Americas was organized in honour of Canada’s 150th anniversary. It highlights a number of famous and acclaimed artists from the Americas whose works were invited directly from their respective Embassies in Canada namely: Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay. Enjoy the exhibition until November 30th.

Birchbark Canoe

MacOdrum library’s lobby was recently transformed with the permanent installation of a Wigwàs Chiman (birchbark canoe) which was built using traditional methods by twelve Carleton students working under Daniel “Pinock” Smith. The Centre for Indigenous Initiatives and Carleton University Art Gallery hosted weekly gatherings with Smith, a well-known artist and canoe builder from Kitigan Zibi, where customary Anishinaabe tools, materials and methods were used in the canoe-building. The gatherings took place at the gallery from January through May 2017, with one final session at Smith’s workshop in June. Read more information on the construction of the canoe in reflective text written by Alexandra Kahsenni:io Nahwegahbow @ https://carleton.ca/our-stories/story/crafting-birchbark-canoe/.

Exhibit: Canadian Jewish Experience

The Canadian Jewish Experience is a new exhibit of specially selected photographs and panels that illustrates nine main themes telling the story of how Jews have contributed to Canada’s strength and vibrancy during more than 150 years.

The exhibit covers the topics of Jewish migration, business leaders, armed forces participation, public service, architecture, sports, arts and culture. This exhibition was prepared by volunteers and funded by private donations.

Visit this exhibit on the main floor of the Library from October 3rd - 31st in the hallway beside Stairwell B.

"She Wants an Output" Exhibit

“She Wants an Output” is one of the library’s newest exhibits that you won’t want to miss this fall. It highlights the 1980s punk rock music scene in Ottawa through the work of two women who were involved.

The centerpiece of the exhibit, located on the gallery wall, is a composition of appliqued blankets representing stages in Mary Anne Barkhouse’s life as an artist while recording with punk bands like Restless Virgins. On display in the main exhibit case is an eclectic selection from Julia Pine’s collection of zines, flyers, records and other ephemera from her involvement as a musician, producer, writer and community organizer during that time.

The exhibit was curated by Michael Davidge and will be on display until the end of October.

Library Display: 150 Years of Cartography

An exhibit of maps celebrating “150 Years of Cartography: Past, Present and Future” is currently on display in the Alumni Reading Room on the main floor of the library.

Curated by library staff, Sherri Sunstrum and Joel Rivard, the display is in conjunction with the 42nd Annual Conference of the Canadian Cartographic Association, held here at Carleton from May 31 – June 2. Anyone interested in maps or cartography is welcome to attend the conference – a gathering of practitioners, educators, researchers from public and private sectors and the community at large. Topics range from traditional topographic and thematic mapping to online viewers and applications such as Google Earth, as well as mobile apps on hand-held devices.

Art Latcham Memorial Magic Collection

Are you interested in the art of illusion or magic? Discover that sense of mystery with the Art Latcham Memorial Magic Collection now on display on the main floor of the library across from the Reserves Desk. It includes books, magazines, and other interesting ephemera related to illusion and sleight of hand.

Arthur “Art” Latcham, to whom the collection is dedicated, was a philanthropist in the York Region of Ontario, a member of the Hat and Rabbit Club, and a magic enthusiast who always carried a deck of cards to perform magic and sleight of hand at any moment.

The display was curated by Al MacLennan, ARC staff member and runs until April 30, 2017.

April is Poetry Month

In celebration of poetry month, drop by the Thom Panel on the main floor and check out the giant exclamation mark. It is a ‘broadside’ featuring the poem “Boys Bathing”, by Irving Layton, along with many book covers from the Special Poetry collection of the Archives and Research Collection.

 “Deep Thermal” located on the (opposite) Gallery wall, is from the Modern poetry collection. The viewers create their own connection between the image and word. This is a limited edition ekphrastic portfolio of six numbered pigment prints, signed by  Mary Heebner, with poetic responses to the images by Clayton Eshleman.

The displays run until April 30th and were curated by Lloyd K. Keane, PhD, Monica Ferguson and Al MacLennan.

100th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge

To mark the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge on April 9, 2017, please drop by and visit a thought provoking exhibit honouring this pivotal event of the First World War. The battle began on Easter Monday, April 9, 1917 with Canadian regiments launching a major offensive against the enemy. Many were citizen-soldiers who together created a turning point for the Allies and helped shape a stronger sense of Canadian identity. This exhibit includes posters, diary entries, photos, letters home, a soldier’s attestation document, and many WWI books from the library’s collection. It is located on the main floor in front of the Research Help Desk until April 30.

Visit the Thunder in Our Voices exhibit from March 18 to 25

Thunder in Our Voices tells the story of the 1970s Berger Inquiry into the Construction of a Pipeline in the Mackenzie Valley. It was 40 years ago that the ground-breaking Berger inquiry sparked a national discussion about Indigenous land rights, and gave a forum to the rising Indigenous movement. The issues that the Inquiry addressed are the same as those that are with us today, as more pipelines through Indigenous lands are in prospect. Drew Ann Wake, a CBC reporter and museum curator, reported on the original inquiry and is now traveling the country educating students. As part of the exhibit, you can watch interviews with the original Dene, Inuvialuit and corporate witnesses before the Inquiry, recorded then and now.

The exhibit, which will be on both the Gallery Wall on the main floor and in the main foyer space, will be open March 18 to 25. Admission is free. 

New Display: History of the Faculty of Public Affairs

The Faculty of Public Affairs is celebrating its 75th year at Carleton! A new display on the main floor will showcase some of the key milestones and projects of the faculty’s numerous academic units.  Following the Second World War when Carleton U. was founded, its first graduates were in Journalism and Public Administration, considered at that time to be entirely new subjects for post-secondary study in Canada. Other groundbreaking programs were soon to follow. The profile of Carleton’s leading programs in the study of civic institutions and public policies, as well as the advantages of the university’s location in the nation’s capital, further promoted the creation of the Faculty of Public Affairs in the late 1990s. The exhibit will be on display until March 31st.

Seeing, Selling and Situating Radio in Canada, 1922-1956

A new exhibition located on the main floor and in the Discovery Centre explores representations of radio to show how manufacturers and advertisers sold the idea of listening to the wireless. Aspects of radio’s visual and material culture from the early 1920s to the mid 50’s shows how radio affected conceptions of space. Seeing, selling and situating radio in Canada, 1922-1956 is curated by Michael Windover and Anne MacLennan and will be on exhibit from January 23 – April 30, 2017.

Envisioning Technologies

Envisioning Technologies” is a new exhibit created by Carleton University’s Disability Research Group that documents the history of assistive or adaptive technologies for people who are blind or partially-sighted in Canada. It presents five case studies spanning the late nineteenth century to the present day and tells a range of stories that highlight the role of different innovators, organizations, and activists in bringing about a more inclusive Canada, beginning with the introduction of braille and its attendant technologies. The exhibit is located on the main floor beside the Reserve Services Desk from January 3 to April 7, 2017.

Holiday Exhibit

Each year, December brings a month filled with celebrations and a variety of gift giving traditions. Come in and enjoy the library’s newest exhibit displaying holiday history from our collection including books, plays, poetry, music, and video games about celebrations of the Solstice, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Omisoka, Yule, Saturnalia, and Christmas. It is located at the main entrance until December 22.

Graphic Novel Exhibit: "Drawn Out"

A new exhibit of selected items from our graphic novel collection is on now in the display case at the library entrance. The exhibit was created by librarian Kristof Avramsson, who describes it below:

This display highlights a small sampling of the library’s graphic novel collection, demonstrating what Edward Said (2007) described as power of comics to:                                                                                     

‘Say what couldn’t otherwise be said, perhaps what wasn’t permitted to be said or imagined, defying the ordinary processes of thought, which are policed, shaped and re-shaped by all sorts of pedagogical as well as ideological pressures’.

The inclusion of graphic novels in a university library, a repository which traditionally collected ‘scholarly’ resources to support and inform institutional research practice, can trouble the collections where they are housed.  They offer renderings of life and culture which are neither scholarly nor academic, and are frequently peopled by the under-represented.  Using sequential art as a story telling device, graphic novels provide highly accessible glimpses into the world of their creators, but in unpredictable ways.”

The exhibit runs until November 30, 2016.

Geography Awareness Week

Join the annual worldwide celebration of ‘geography’ as the MacOdrum Library hosts Geography Awareness Week from Nov. 13 – 18th on the main floor, and in the Discovery Centre.  This year’s theme is the ‘Power of Parks’.  Faculty members will be on hand throughout the week to answer questions about geography programs offered here at Carleton. Learn how drones and ice corers are used by geographers and see them on display. Visit the main floor exhibit of children’s drawings of world maps from the Barbara Petchenik Childen’s Map Archive.

On Nov. 16th don’t miss GIS Day held in the Discovery Centre and learn about the world of geomatics and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and the impact that geospatial thinking has in our daily lives. Or, plan to attend the alumni geography careers event in Room 252, 3-6pm, hosted by DGES highlighting the successes of geography graduates. All activities and displays throughout the week are hosted by library staff in cooperation with the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies faculty, staff and students.

Ahoy Matey!

Do you enjoy a hearty read about pirates, smugglers, and privateers? How about planning a trip to dangerous and frightful destinations? Or maybe listening to the ‘Pirates of Penzance’ is your thing? How about discovering the treasure troves of the world, lost mines and ghost towns, sunken treasure, or famous women of English piracy?

It’s all right here in your library! A unique showcase of the pillaging & piracy of the buccaneers and conquistadors in ‘days of yore’. You can’t miss this display to help bring out the scurvy pirate in you!

Nobel Prize Exhibit

Don’t miss the Nobel Prize Exhibit currently on display in front of the Research Help desk on the main floor. Get up close and personal with some of the winning papers from 2013 – 2015. Each winning recipient’s paper for 2016 will be added when announced.  View many books on the history of the Nobel prize and its categories including women Nobel laureates, and beautiful facsimiles of the Nobel prize medals. In your Nobel future, which prize will you win? Tell us what destiny awaits you on the comment board.

Exhibit: Ace Academy Flight Experience

Come and discover Ace Academy, a new interactive exhibit that features aircraft from the Canada Aviation and Space Museum’s First World War Collection. Visitors enter an immersive environment, facing the screen and standing on a rondel to activate the experience. Aircraft imagery takes centre-stage as players fly a realistic rendering of the  museum's Sopwith Ship Camel biplane. Moving their arms up and down, and tilting their bodies, visitors manoeuver an airplane onscreen—dodging enemy aircraft and aligning themselves to fire.

This flight experience is based on Ace Academy, an educational game produced by the Museum in partnership with SEED Interactive. The game features other aircraft from the museum's collection as it guides players through levels that explain how aircraft fly. Ace Academy and its sequel Ace Academy: Black Flight are available for free on the App Store and Google Play. They serve to extend players' engagement and learning beyond the flight experience.

The exhibition is located on the main floor of the library, near the Reserve Services Desk, from September 13 to October 31, 2016.

Art Exhibit commemorating Komagata Maru Incident

An exhibition of paintings commemorating the Komagata Maru Incident of 1914 will be opened by the Canada-India Centre for Excellence at Carleton University and hosted by the library. The official opening ceremony will be held on Wednesday, May 18, 2016 at 4 p.m. on the main floor of the library and the exhibit will be on the main floor wall space. The Komogata Maru was a Japanese ship that arrived in Vancouver in May of 1914, carrying 376 Indian passengers, mostly Punjabi Sikhs who were ex-military men who had served the British empire in wars, but was turned away by Canada. Upon their return to India, they faced violence by the British-Indian government. These paintings show the struggle against injustice of the Komagata Maru passengers. The exhibit runs from May 18 - June 18 2016.

National Poetry Month Exhibit

Archives and Research Collections (ARC) has created an exhibit for National Poetry Month, highlighting items from our Special Collection of Modern Poetry. The exhibit includes broadsides as well as books in various forms from small presses.

The titles were selected to reflect the diversity of Canada and of our collection, as well as prominent names in the modern poetry movement. One poet featured, George Johnston, has a special connection to Carleton, having been a professor here from 1950-1979. 

The exhibit is located on the main level of the library, opposite Room 252 and was curated by Al MacLennan, ARC.


The exhibit "POSITIVE SEX: Eroticizing Safer Sex Practices in Canada in the 1980s and 1990s" is now showing on the Thom Exhibit wall on the main floor of the library until May 8.

The exhibit explores AIDS activists' work to eroticize safer sex practices in Canada in the late 1980s and early 1990s. To activists, eroticizing was a personal and political intervention. It was a way of refusing to see “sex-crazed, ‘promiscuous,’ bath-going gay men" as a problem and refusing to push for monogamous “politically correct” relationships. It was a way of promoting safer sex practices without compromising sexual freedom and without bothering people living with HIV/AIDS.

In honour of Youth HIV and AIDS Day, “POSITIVE SEX” was curated by members of the AIDS Activist History Project, Carleton University’s Department of Sociology and Anthropology, with support from the MacOdrum Library and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).

If you have any inquiries please contact Alexis Shotwell, Sarah Rodimon or Janna Klostermann at aidsactivisthistory@gmail.com.


Come and discover examples of current Canadian innovation with a new exhibit beginning Friday, January 8th. Technozones was created by the Canada Science and Technology Museum and highlights innovative products and services from the lab to the marketplace.

Learn more about two Canadian success stories! Harvesting Sunlight, designed in collaboration with SunCentral, provides unique lighting solutions deep within a building’s core, and Underwater Imaging, designed in collaboration with 2G Robotics, captures precise measurements and generates 3D images of subsea environments and structures, such as shipwrecks, pipelines and dams. The exhibit is located on the main floor of the library, adjacent to the Research Help Desk.

Discover Conchology

Discover Conchology, the study and collecting of sea shells, with the library’s newest exhibition located next to the Library Services desk on the main floor. Professor Don Beecher of the English Department demonstrates his love of shells with this beautiful eye-catching display of the most exotic works of nature. As a collector, he has travelled far and wide on ‘shelling expeditions’ from Turkey to California and muses how making proper identifications can, at times, rival Sherlock Holmes for reading data. This exhibit is only a small sampling of his 6,000 specimens of bivalve shells from the world’s seas.

Shells consist of calcium carbonate, each shell unwinding to its maturity from the tiny point or ‘protoconch’ at the apex in which these sea snails begin their lives. Many shells are deep water specimens, some recovered at over 2000 m and never seen on shore. They are usually among the rarest to find. Shells are studied for the sake of preserving habitats and biodiversity. Many species also serve as important forms of local food and become overexploited. In some species, the cones are under study for the potential pharmaceutical value of their toxins to replace morphine.

New Exhibit: Lines & Signs

“Lines & Signs: A Photographic Essay on Transitional Spaces” is a new exhibit of photographs by Janet H. Tulloch, running from Oct. 23 – Dec. 16, 2015 on the main floor of MacOdrum Library.

From the artist’s description of her work:

From 2012-14, the MacOdrum library looked like an archaeological site. ... Translucent laneways altered regularly creating new labyrinths that staff and students were compelled to negotiate in order to avoid the construction minotaur. While the beast was the result of a desperately needed renovations, its presence created the opportunity to peer into the novel spaces and fleeting visual juxtapositions highlighted in this exhibition.

To create this show, I chose from more than 2000 photographs and yet the images offered here present only a small fraction of the process of our library’s massive restoration … During this period, hard hats mixed with toques, steel-toed boots with moccasins, hammers with handbags and blow-torches with backpacks ...  It allowed us a different way of seeing a university institution and its diverse inhabitants at work, providing a brief awareness of transitional spaces and how we interact with them.

Janet Tulloch is an interdisciplinary scholar working in the areas of religion, women and material culture. She is a contract instructor in Carleton’s College of the Humanities.

Nobel Laureates Exhibit

Don’t miss the Nobel Laureates Exhibit currently on display in front of the Research Help desk on the main floor. It includes many books on the history of the Nobel prize and its categories, women Nobel laureates, biographies on Canadian Nobel winners, beautiful facsimiles of the Nobel prize medals, and an interactive display of the winning papers from 2013-2015 for easy access.

ARC Exhibit on French Artistic Literature

Archives and Research Collections (ARC) is proud to support the Carleton University Art Gallery (CUAG) exhibit Making and Marketing Art History in 18th-Century France curated by W. McAllister Johnson. ARC has created a supplementary exhibit entitled Artistic Literature: Making and Marketing Art History in 18th-Century France located outside room 582 of the MacOdrum Library. The exhibit highlights relevant rare books from the W. McAllister Johnson rare book collection and will be on display until April. For more information on the art exhibit please visit the CUAG webpage: http://cuag.carleton.ca/index.php/exhibitions/258/