A home for artists
The challenge before Leon Bakst was to design a private
theater for one of his most loyal patrons. The problem was
where to begin.
Bakst, the set and costumer designer for
the Ballets Russes in Paris, was in 1922 a guest at
Evergreen House, the home of Alice Warder Garrett and John
Work Garrett. Alice had invited Bakst to come live at the
North Charles Street estate and design a theater for her.
She encouraged him to use the home's bounteous art and book
collections as a source of inspiration.
Peasant Art in Russia, a book Bakst
found in the Garrett Library, provided folk images that he
stenciled and used as the theme for the whimsical theater
that can be seen today.
The best of Friends for 70
On March 16, 1931, a small group of men and women gathered
in Gilman Hall on the university's Homewood campus. A
regular Who's Who of Johns Hopkins and Baltimore, the
evening's roll call included such familiar names as Baetjer,
Goodnow, Hutzler, Passano and Welch.
The meeting had been convened not to
discuss business or politics, medicine or education, but
rather a shared passion, books. The occasion was the first
general meeting of the Friends of the Johns Hopkins
University Libraries, an organization formed just 11 days
prior to stimulate interest and financial support for the
university's library system. With the nation still in the
throes of the Great Depression, there was concern at the
time that the university would not be able to properly fund
the libraries. The fledgling group felt that through a
membership drive additional funds could be sought to
preserve the integrity of the library and foster its
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