Ephemera 42: Creating Places and Spaces

Thomas A. Horrocks's picture
September 1, 2021
Connecticut, United States
Subject Fields: 
American History / Studies, Architecture and Architectural History, Art, Art History & Visual Studies, Social Sciences, Urban Design and Planning

Ephemera 42

Creating Places and Spaces

One of the fascinating things about society is how we create our living environments, whether it is the city or community in which we choose to live or our own living room. Ephemera 42 will focus on the design of environments, interior and exterior, ranging in scale from regional planning and urban design, to the architectural detail or sidewalk lamppost. This rich topic encompasses design innovations, stylistic and regional movements, architects, landscape architects, urbanists, draftspersons and craftspeople—anyone and anything that serves to shape the environment in which we live. 

  Creating Places and Spaces is an exciting theme, but also a broad one. What says home to you -- skyscraper or beach cottage? Pocket-sized garden or New York's Central Park? We look forward to hearing proposals on ideas like these:

  • Architects such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Julia Morgan, I.M. Pei, Daniel Burnham, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Louis Sullivan, Christopher Wren
  • Design Styles such as classical, beaux arts, prairie school, modern, art deco, Greek revival
  • Exterior Spaces like parks, Japanese tea gardens, water features, formal English-style gardens, casual country gardens -- and/or landscape designers like Frederick Law Olmsted, Capability Brown, Beatrix Farrand, Thomas Church, Walter J. Hood
  • And Beyond! Green buildings ● tech innovations driving new furnishings or styles ● Victorian patent furniture ● window treatments, wallpaper, color schemes ● the parlor vs. the living room ● the origins and evolution of indoor plumbing, labor-saving appliances, the suburbs ● Hoosier cabinets ● the "City Beautiful" movement ● the changing definition of the "home of the future."

Ephemera 42, the Ephemera Society of America (ESA) annual conference, will take place at the Hyatt Regency in Greenwich, Connecticut on March 18, 2022. Each speaker will address a topic related to the creation of places and spaces, relying heavily on tangible ephemera—blue prints, broadsides for land promotions, catalogues for components, color boards, correspondence between architects and clients, preliminary designs, final designs, legislation, litigation, political posters, sample books, sketch books, and virtually anything else used in or influencing the creation of our environments—to illustrate their subject. 


We invite you to submit proposals for presentations.  Each presentation will be 30 minutes in length, followed by a brief Q&A.  Please submit the following:

  • Presentation title and a written abstract, focusing on the way ephemera tells the story of your chosen topic.  Please describe the specific types of ephemera you will use to illustrate your topic.  Each presentation needs to feature at least three different types of ephemera.  Proposals should not exceed 150 words.
  • 5 to 6 representative ephemera images
  • A one-paragraph biography, including any affiliations
  • Mailing address, phone number and e-mail address

Following a review of all proposals received, finalists will be asked to submit the following:

  • 20 to 25 images of the types of ephemera that will be used to illustrate your talk
  • A jpg photograph of yourself for publicity purposes

Proposals must be submitted by September 1, 2021 to Barbara Loe, Ephemera 42 Conference Chair, by e-mail at bjloe@earthlink.net or by post to Barbara Loe, Ephemera Society of America, Inc., P.O. Box 95, Cazenovia, NY 13035-0095.

Decisions and notification about proposals will be made by October 31, 2021.  Presenters will be requested to sign a release at the time of acceptance allowing their presentation to be filmed for use by the ESA.

If selected, a draft PowerPoint presentation must be submitted by February 28, 2022. The final presentation must be submitted by March 7, 2022.  Presentations must include 25 or more ephemera images.  At this time, funding is unavailable from ESA to support travel or presentation costs. 

The Ephemera Society is eager to expand the use of ephemera in the classroom, and we encourage presentations on all subjects addressing the use of ephemera in teaching and academic research.  We encourage undergraduate and graduate students to submit proposals for the Young Scholars Panel to be held on Thursday afternoon, March 17th.  For more information, please see "Young Scholar Projects" under the "Conference" tab on our website:  www.ephemerasociety.org

Contact Info: 

Barbara Loe, Conference Chair

Contact Email: