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Research Guides

Collection Guidelines: Art: Scope

Guidelines for collection scope and acquisitions strategies for Art.


a. Chronological

The Art Library collects books, journals, and media in all periods of art history, from antiquity to the present, with an emphasis on Renaissance art, modern art, and contemporary art.  

For the media collection, the Art Library also collects materials related to art and art history from antiquity to the present.  (The Media Center in Suzzallo Library collects films related to art and art history as well.)

b. Geographical

We collect in all geographical regions with an emphasis on Europe and North America.  

c. Language

Primary emphasis is on works in English, secondary emphases are other European languages, predominately Italian.  Materials in Asian languages are acquired selectively, with the largest concentration of Asian language art books in the East Asia Library.    

d. Format

The collection includes books, media, and periodicals.

The print collection includes monographs, photo books, exhibition catalogs, and catalogue raisonnes.  Microform materials pertaining to art are located in the Microform/Newspaper Unit in the Suzzallo Library.

The media collection includes DVD and VHS.  We collect periodicals in both print and electronic form; the electronic copies are generally part of an online database or index.  

e. Exclusions

The Art Library does not collect microforms, image reproductions, slides, art works in any form, graphic novels, manga, or comics.  Although we do collect monographs and periodicals to support the division of Design, we do not have a materials library.  The Art Library also does not collect technical manuals on software packages that may be used in the production of art, such as CAD, Photoshop, etc. The SoA+AH+D Visual Resources department has an in-house MDID Digital Images Database. Visual Services staff will add images to this database when requested by School faculty, students, and staff.  Images from these databases are intended for use by current UW faculty, staff, and students for purposes related to the UW teaching mission.