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New School Communications and External Affairs photographs

 Record Group
Identifier: NS-03-01-09

Other Finding Aids note


This record group consists of photographic records created, commissioned and compiled by The New School's Communications and External Affairs office. The collection consists of images of campus facilities, faculty and administrators, dominated by images of Parsons School of Design classes, the Parsons fashion critics awards, commencement ceremonies, and guests of Inside the Actors Studio. While there are photographs from earlier decades, the prints, negatives, transparencies, and thumbnail printouts of digital image files largely represent the university in the 1990s through early 2000s.


  • 1930-2005
  • Majority of material found within 1980-2005



8.54 Cubic Feet (8 boxes and 10 folders)

Language of Materials


Scope and Content of Collection

This record group is comprised of analog image files amassed by the office known as Communications and External Affairs (CEA), one of The New School's largest administrative units. Images take the form of prints, contact sheets and thumbnail printouts, transparencies, and negatives. Many of the prints and contact sheets bear editorial markings, evidence of their use in printed course catalogs and promotional materials, press kits, and marketing and publicity products created by the office. Frequent subjects include campus facilities, faculty and administrators, Parsons School of Design classes, the Parsons fashion critics awards, commencement ceremonies, and guests of the "Inside the Actors Studio" series. Photographers represented include, in roughly chronological order: Gin Briggs (1960s), Peter Moore (late 1960s-1970s), Paul Seligman (1970s), Stanley Seligson (1970s-1980s), Bob Adelman (late 1970s-1980s), Björg (1980s-1990s), Joseph Schuyler (1980s-1990s), Jerry Speier (1980s-1990s), Karen Zebulon (1980s), Jerry Bauer (1990s), Arlene Collins (1990s), Brooke Hunyady (1990s), Harry Heleotis (1990s-2000s), and Stephanie Berger (2000s).

While earlier materials are present, the bulk of photographs date from 1990-2005. It is possible that the documentation ends at this point due to changes in image storage technologies, with Communications and External Affairs staff beginning in the early 2000s to store born-digital images on computer hard drives, servers and digital asset management systems, rather than in physical filing cabinets, which is where the files comprising this record group were stored prior to being transferred to the Archives.

Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research use. Please contact for appointment.

Use Restrictions

To publish images of material from this collection, permission must be obtained in writing from The New School Archives and Special Collections. Please contact:

Historical Note

The New School Communications and External Affairs (CEA) office is the former name of the administrative department of The New School responsible for public relations and marketing messaging for the university, with a focus on producing recruitment materials for prospective students for all colleges. On the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine, the website for CEA dates from 2010-2014 and begins redirecting to the Marketing and Communication website in 2014. Prior to becoming CEA, the department was known as the New School Communications Office and before that it was called the New School Publicity Office. For many years, at least into the 1980s (and beyond, in the case of some offices), university divisions were responsible for their own publicity and operated separately. Legendary art director and Parsons Communication Design Department faculty member Cipe Pineles served as director of publication design for Parsons School of Design in the early 1980s. The department consolidated and expanded greatly in the early to mid-2000s. As of 2023, the administrative unit's website indicates that the mission of the group is to "create messages in all media forms that build awareness and engagement with the university's diverse offerings among prospective and current students, the New School community, and the world."

Organization and Arrangement

Organized into 7 series by subject matter, function, or program; arranged alphabetically, except for the Actors Studio Seminar and Commencement photographs, which are filed chronologically.: 1. General 2. Actors Studio 3. Buildings and campus 4. Catalog production files 5. Commencement 6. Parsons School of Design departments and programs 7. People.

Custodial History

These image files were stored in the offices of Communications and External Affairs, in some cases for many decades. As such, designers and communications officers likely employed them at different times for different purposes. Care should be taken in interpreting inscriptions. Processing archivists made efforts to file mis-filed and unlabeled images in appropriate locations.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The first accession consisting of two binders of 35 mm slides was transferred in 2012 from the Special Projects Media Associate in the office of Communications and External Affairs. These primarily consisted of slides documenting New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music catalog cover artwork, buildings and campus imagery, and artwork. In 2016, the same office transferred a much larger collection of image assets to The New School Archives, consisting of multiple slide binders, prints, negatives, and digital image files stored on optical disk. (The images on optical discs will be found as part of a separate collection, New School Communications and External Affairs photographs on optical media (NS.03.01.10).

Related Materials

This collection is closely related to the New School Photograph collection (NS.04.01.01). In some cases, images may be duplicated across the these collections, albeit often in different formats (e.g., contact sheets in one collection, prints in another). Additionally, the photographs in this collection may overlap with images in the Bob Adelman photograph collection (NA.0014.01) and the Parsons School of Design photograph collection (PC.04.01.01). As with the present collection, the bulk of photographs in the New School photograph collection and the Parsons School of Design photograph collection were compiled for marketing and promotional purposes and likely originated within Communications and External Affairs or its predecessor units (in 2023, this office is called Marketing and Communications). Because this group of photographs was formerly part of the New School Communications and External Affairs records (NS.03.01.04), it is possible that promotional materials, such as posters and brochures that have photographs incorporated into the files may be found in that collection.

Processing Information

The photographs in this collection were transferred to the New School Archives along with a number of CDs and DVDs. (CDs and DVDs together are referred to as optical media.) For processing purposes, the print photographs in this collection and the optical media have been separated into discrete finding aids. The optical media will be found in the New School Communications and External Affairs photographs on optical media collection (NS.03.01.10). The series titles formerly indicated that the material had been transferred from the Special Projects Office, with accession numbers 2012.NC.03 and 2016.NS.08.

Guide to the New School Communications and External Affairs photographs
New School Archives and Special Collections staff
October 2, 2023
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description