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Bob Dylan Archive Comes to Tulsa

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University of Tulsa
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The Bob Dylan Archive has been acquired by the George Kaiser Family Foundation and The University of Tulsa and will be permanently housed in Tulsa, under the stewardship of TU’s Helmerich Center for American Research, for subsequent public exhibition in the city’s burgeoning Brady Arts District, it was jointly announced Wednesday by GKFF Executive Director Ken Levit and TU President Steadman Upham. Comprised of more than 6,000 items spanning nearly 60 years of Bob Dylan’s unique artistry, singular career and worldwide cultural significance, the archive includes decades of never-before-seen  handwritten manuscripts, notebooks and correspondence; films, videos, photographs and artwork; memorabilia and ephemera; personal documents and effects; unreleased studio and concert recordings; musical instruments and many other items.

The alliance of GKFF and TU was chosen by Dylan’s representatives over other suitors vying for this historic collection, and both entities view the archive as an important acquisition for Tulsa in many ways. As Levit explained, “Bob Dylan is a national treasure whose work continues to enrich the lives of millions the world over, and we are proud to be bringing such an important, comprehensive and culturally significant archive to Tulsa. Our combined philanthropic and academic approach made a strong case for assuring Mr. Dylan and his representatives that Tulsa would provide the ideal environment to care for and exhibit this collection, and the result is a boon for Tulsa that will soon attract Bob Dylan fans and scholars to our city from around the world.”

“The University of Tulsa is pleased to collaborate with the George Kaiser Family Foundation in assuming the role of steward for this invaluable collection. Because of the level of scholarship available through the university and its partners, TU is the perfect keeper of the Bob Dylan Archive,” said TU President Steadman Upham. “Dylanology is a growing aspect of social science and humanities research, and Tulsa will soon become the international epicenter for the academic pursuit of all things Dylan.”

Public Radio Tulsa is owned and operated by the University of Tulsa and is a benefactor of the George Kaiser Family Foundation.