Monthly Archives: May 2023

Retirement of Allison Cywin, Art Education, Art History & Media Studies Librarian

Allison Cywin Spring 2023

Allison Cywin joined UMass Dartmouth in the summer of 2004 and has served as the Director of the Visual Resource Center (VRC) in the College of Visual and Performing Arts. During her tenure, she transformed the VRC from a traditional slide library to an image and multimedia digital repository.  Her role has been to generate and manage digital assets and disseminate these resources for the purpose of classroom instruction and research campus wide.

Cywin began her career as the curator of the Newport Art Museum. Over ten-years in this position, she curated many contemporary exhibitions featuring works by well-known artists: Andy Warhol, Howard Ben Tre, Tom Patti, Stephan Brigidi, and Chris Van Allsburg, among others.  

In the early 1990’s, Cywin became the Graphics Curator at the Rhode Island Historical Society’s research library. The graphics collection represents three-centuries of iconographic materials that included photography, prints, drawings, architectural drawings, cartography, and 16mm television newsfilm collection.  Before leaving the Society to join UMass Dartmouth, she established an in-house digital lab to digitize and preserve the Society’s nineteenth-century glass plate, nitrate, and acetate negative collections.

Allison has completed numerous digital projects in her career at UMass Dartmouth, and most recently, along with Art Education, Art History & Media Studies Professor Anna Dempsey, Cywin created an interactive tour of UMass Dartmouth which focuses on the brutalist aesthetic, and the work of renowned architect Paul Marvin Rudolph. This tour is available through the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth website at, and It is approximately 45 minutes and includes thirteen video stops as well as links to arts and cultural organizations and tourist designations to encourage visitation and commerce in the region.

The UMD librarians wish Allison the best in her retirement and many adventures with her family! She has been an asset to UMass Dartmouth and CVPA.