144 pages + endplates, University of Pennsylvania, $39.95
For alumni, for friends, and for anyone who loves Penn, this beautiful new coffee-table volume makes an excellent gift. Produced by the Publications Services Office, "A Photographic Portrait" is just that - the story, told in pictures, of the people, places, events and quirky traditions that make Penn what it is today, told in 150 color illustrations. The book is dedicated to the late Steve Murray, the former vice president for business services who died last April at the age of 51.
It's been 12 years since the last coffee-table Penn view book was published, and much about the campus has changed. Many of the pictures of campus buildings and landscapes in the book, taken over the course of the past year, reflect those changes. Old familiar buildings such as College Hall, Logan Hall and the Furness Building appear here, and newer additions to the campus also get their due.
The photographs take in an entire year in the life of the campus. Familiar traditions such as Hey Day; the pomp, pageantry and frivolity of Commencement; and the athletic events that bring students past and present together are chronicled in the pages of "A Photographic Portrait."
And as one of the things that makes Penn special is its location in the heart of a great city, the book also includes images of uniquely Philadelphia landmarks and landscapes.
Taken together, the photos form an up-to-the minute portrait of a great institution. The book will no doubt delight old grads and bring back memories for more recent alumni and friends. It also makes a wonderful introduction to Penn for those who've never visited the campus.
Originally published on October 15, 1998