VSU students can now travel back in time.
Starting this fall, the Tatler-Burgess Collection offers nearly three dozen antique items on display on the second and fourth level in Odum Library.
“If people were to go to Archives and Special Collections on the fourth level, there is various work on display there including some maps and modern lithographs—some by Matisse and Picasso,” Andrew Tatler, creator of Tatler-Burgess Collection and graduate student, said. “Some of them even date back to the fifteen hundreds.”
Brought to VSU shortly after The Happening, the collection features antique books, maps, art, Chinese ceramics, medieval manuscripts and more on display for students.
Tatler Burgess believes a chance meeting with Debra Davis helped bring the artifacts to VSU.
“I met Debra Davis—head of archives here—and we started chatting,” he said. “I started bringing pieces in and she became extremely enthusiastic. She felt like it would be a huge asset to be able to show them here at VSU to students and faculty—so now it’s on a 2 year loan until spring of 2014.”
On Oct. 11, both Tatler- Burgess and Debra Davis hosted “A Guide to Collecting, Authenticating, and Exhibiting Antique Printed Artifacts” in the UC theater. The event was free and offered students more information about the collection.
“We discussed collecting, authenticating and displaying antique artifacts,” he said. “We also talked about how to start a collection, what to look for, and the basics of authentication—so basically you know the value of what you’re purchasing.”
According to Tatler-Burgess, a trip to Europe sparked his interest in eclectic antiques and authentification
“A long time ago when I lived in the Netherlands in Europe, I went in an antique store and came across an antique map,” Tatler Burgess said. “I was so blown away that there was a map still available that dated back to the sixteen hundreds so I purchased it and I got hooked—it turned into an obsession because I purchased a lot and gained a lot of knowledge.”
Tatler-Burgess then turned his hobby into a business.
“I set up an online business which I did very well in, and when I came to the states with my art—I’m a professional artist—my wife and I decided to incorporate this element into the gallery,” he said. “So we had the art which I had produced, the jewelry I had designed, and then we incorporated this—it was very successful. “
Tatler-Burgess believed the rareness of the items was inspiring to many.
“We set up our gallery in such a way that people could discover things—maps, manuscripts, etc. that would blow people’s minds.”
Not only are the actual artifacts available for students to see, there is also a database available for students to see the collection online from anywhere.
“Now if you Google Tatler- Burgess Collection it’ll come up, and people can now access this collection from around the world,” he said. “That’s great for VSU and The Archives because it demonstrates to the outside world what a local university is capable of doing.”
According to Tatler- Burgess, there’s more in store for VSU.
“We also have work that’s not on display yet but that’s kept in the vault,” he said. “It’ll come out in due time when we start to do themed exhibitions.”
Tatler-Burgess has future plans for his collection.
“It’s our plan to reopen the gallery when I graduate.”