Processing is currently underway for the Walter Hood Collection through funding provided by a National Endowment for the Humanities: Collections and Reference Resources Grant. Over the last few months, I’ve been doing an initial inventory of the legacy media (CDs, DVDs, and Zip disks) in the collection to prepare it for imaging (a process where the files on these items are captured in a way that makes them easier to preserve for the long term). Processing the files captured from these legacy media items will happen in 2020. Meanwhile, my focus for the remainder of 2019 has been to preserve and process the analog materials in Hood’s collection, which are primarily comprised of files, drawings, and photographs relating to his numerous projects. Processing these materials has been an important way to better understand Hood’s approach to design, particularly when looking at his thoughtful engagements with the communities he’s designing for. Hood utilizes meetings and worksheets to gather feedback from the people who live in the regions his designs are situated in, and these are well documented for many of his projects in the EDA’s holdings. This attentive approach can also be seen in numerous sketchbooks in his collection. The sketchbooks are a treasure trove of images and notes by Hood, from his early days as a student at CED, to travel throughout the Bay Area and beyond, to his initial visits to a region he’s thinking of designing for. I’ve found these sketchbooks to be a useful window into Hood’s design process!
Scroll below to see images from the sketchbooks. The Walter Hood Collection will be available to researchers in early 2021!