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Robert O. Preusser papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MC-0219

Scope and Contents

Proposals, course descriptions, teaching notes, UROP (Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program) project descriptions, information about student exhibits, and copies of Preusser's writings trace the development of the visual arts program at MIT. The collection also contains glass and 35-mm slides of Preusser's visual design projects. Preusser was co-editor of the art journal Leonardo from 1974 to 1990, and correspondence related to this and his other outside professional activities is also included.


  • Creation: 1954 - 1990


Conditions Governing Access

Portions of this collection must be reviewed to identify any restricted material before access can be granted. Please submit your requests at least ten business days before your desired visit to allow time for this review. An archivist will respond within five business days to let you know whether your requested material is open. For complete information on this policy, see our Statement on Accessing Institute Records. Restrictions and materials requiring review are noted in the finding aid.

Conditions Governing Use

Access to collections in the Department of Distinctive Collections is not authorization to publish. Please see the MIT Libraries Permissions Policy for permission information. Copyright of some items in this collection may be held by respective creators, not by the donor of the collection or MIT.

Biographical Note

Robert Preusser studied at the Institute of Design, Chicago, 1939-1940, 1941-1942; Tulane University (Newcomb School of Art), New Orleans, 1940-1941; and the Art Center School, Los Angeles, 1946-1947. He came to the MIT Department of Architecture in 1954 at the invitation of Gyorgy Kepes and was a visiting lecturer, 1954-1957, professor of visual design, 1957-1985, and director of education at the MIT Center for Advanced Visual Studies, 1974-1985. He developed the first studio course given as part of the "Field 10" program in the Department of Humanities, which was formed to develop the visual awareness of science and engineering students. In 1965, a team of his students made the first computer-generated design to be printed on the cover of Fortune magazine.


4.5 Cubic Feet (4 record cartons, 1 manuscript box, 1 half manuscript box)

Language of Materials


Physical Location

Materials are stored off-site. Advance notice is required for use.

Processing Information note

Some collection descriptions are based on legacy data and may be incomplete or contain inaccuracies. Description may change pending verification. Please contact the MIT Department of Distinctive Collections if you notice any errors or discrepancies.

Preliminary Inventory to the Papers of Robert O. Preusser
Ready For Review
Frances O'Donnell
Copyright 1995
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Libraries. Department of Distinctive Collections Repository

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries
Building 14N-118
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge MA 02139-4307 US