Contents and Arrangement Expanded View

Collection Overview

Princeton University. Lewis Center for the Arts.
Lewis Center for the Arts Records
Princeton University Archives
Permanent URL:
18 boxes
Storage Note:
  • Mudd Manuscript Library (scamudd): Box 1-18


The Lewis Center for the Arts was created in 2006 to serve as the organizational home of several of the University's academic programs, including creative writing, dance, music theater, theater, visual arts, and the Princeton Atelier. The records currently contain files of the Princeton Atelier, photographs of dance at Princeton, recordings of public lectures, and books to commemorate visual arts thesis shows.

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

The Program in Dance records primarily consist of photographs of dance at Princeton collected by Professor Ze'eva Cohen. Also included are slides of Cohen's dance classes from the 1970s and DVDs of events sponsored by the Lewis Center, such as "The Best of Princeton: Alumni Choreographer and Dancers in Concert" and "40 Years of Dance at Princeton: A Tribute to Ze'eva Cohen."

The Program in Visual Arts series includes two volumes of images of student work from senior thesis shows in 2018 and 2019.

The recordings of lectures and programs in Series 3 come from events sponsored by the Lewis Center and various partners.

The records of the Princeton Atelier consist of administrative files, including planning and inception files, files on guest artists, and files on each course, including course proposals, course catalog ads, correspondence with guest artists and teachers, syllabi and schedules, application material, programs and flyers for performances. Publicity files contain flyers, posters and programs, promotional booklets and clippings. The series also contains photographs of courses, rehearsals and performances, as well as audiovisual material, primarily taped end-of-semester performances.

Collection Creator Biography:

Princeton University. Lewis Center for the Arts.

The Lewis Center for the Arts was created in 2006 to serve as the organizational home of several of the University's academic programs, including creative writing, dance, music theater, theater, visual arts, and the Princeton Atelier. Named for Peter B. Lewis '1955, the Center also hosts arts-related fellowships, programs, lectures, and performances for the university and local community in Princeton.

The study of dance at Princeton began with introduction of coeducation in 1969 and, under the forty year leadership of Ze'eva Cohen, strengthened until it became an official academic offering in 1975 and an autonomous program in 2009. The study of dance encompasses both theoretical and critical aspects as well as physical technique and performance. Over the years, students have practiced and performed at several venues including Alexander Hall in Richardson Auditorium, the Patricia and Ward Hagan '48 Dance Studio, the Roger S. Berlind Theatre and at the Lewis Center for the Arts.

Toni Morrison founded the Princeton Atelier, an interdisciplinary program of seminars in which guest artists--musicians, dancers, directors and actors, filmmakers, writers and visual artists--lead a collaborative effort with students. Artists have often worked in pairs or teams to teach the courses, often bringing at least two genres together. The program has tended to invite working artists who do not normally teach in a university. Faculty members in the arts have also co-taught the seminars. Courses have often culminated in a performance or exhibit.

The first Atelier seminar took place in 1994. Morrison served as the director until 2006, with poet Paul Muldoon joining her as co-director in 2004 and taking over the responsibility in 2006.

Collection History


The Lewis Center Records have been transferred to the University Archives in several accessions numbered AR.2010.109, AR.2011.036, AR.2015.117, AR.2017.096, and AR.2019.078.


No material has been separated from the dance or visual arts records. From the records of the Princeton Atelier, class lists and class evaluations, student applications, grade sheets, receipts for catering, and any documents bearing social security numbers have been separated.

Processing Information

The finding aid was significantly updated by Jarrett M. Drake in December 2016. Series 2: Program in Visual Arts and Series 4: Princeton Atelier were added in 2019 by Phoebe Nobles.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

Series 1, 2, and 3 are open for research.

Records in Series 4, Subseries 1: Administration, are closed for a period of 30 years from their date of creation. Series 4, Subseries 2, 3 and 4 (Photographs, Publicity, and Audiovisual Materials) are open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. For quotations that are fair use as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission to cite or publish is required. The Trustees of Princeton University hold copyright to all materials generated by Princeton University employees in the course of their work. If copyright is held by Princeton University, researchers will not need to obtain permission, complete any forms, or receive a letter to move forward with non-commercial use of materials from the Mudd Library. For materials where the copyright is not held by the University, researchers are responsible for determining who may hold the copyright and obtaining approval from them. If you have a question about who owns the copyright for an item, you may request clarification by contacting us through the Ask Us! form.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

For preservation reasons, original analog and digital media may not be read or played back in the reading room. Users may visually inspect physical media but may not remove it from its enclosure. All analog audiovisual media must be digitized to preservation-quality standards prior to use. Audiovisual digitization requests are processed by an approved third-party vendor. Please note, the transfer time required can be as little as several weeks to as long as several months and there may be financial costs associated with the process. Requests should be directed through the Ask Us Form.

Credit this material:

Lewis Center for the Arts Records; Princeton University Archives, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

Permanent URL:
Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library
Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library
65 Olden Street
Princeton, NJ 08540, USA
(609) 258-6345
Storage Note:
  • Mudd Manuscript Library (scamudd): Box 1-18