Art and the History of Art Research Guide

A note on searching for exhibition catalogs:
Almost all Five College Library catalog records for exhibition catalogs contain the word "exhibitions," either as a subject term, or in the description. To find a catalog focused on a specific artist or topic, perform a keyword search that includes the artist's name (last name is often enough) and/or the topic word or words, and the word exhibition* (using the truncation symbol * will search for both the word exhibition and the subject term exhibitions).

Questions about this guide? Contact
Try these databases first to find journal articles in this discipline.
  • Art Abstracts (1984 to present)
    Index to leading English-language publications in the world of the arts.
  • Art Index Retrospective (1929-1984)
    Index to leading English-language publications in the world of the arts.
  • Arts & Humanities Database
    Full-text publications that focus on art, architecture, design, history, philosophy, music, literature, theatre and cultural studies.
  • ARTbibliographies Modern (ABM) (1974 to present)
    Citations to and abstracts of journal articles, books, essays, exhibition catalogs, dissertations, and exhibition reviews on all forms of modern and contemporary art; some entries date back as far as the late 1960s.
  • ARTicles Online ( (date coverage varies)
    Index of art historical articles, compiled by the University Library of Regensburg (Germany).
  • Arts:Search
    Resource for research into the history of modern design and the applied arts.
  • BHA: Bibliography of the History of Art (1973 to present)
    Bilingual database on the history of post-classical western art. Also includes RAA (Repertoire d'Art et d'Archeologie) from 1973 to 1989 and RILA (International Repertory of the Literature of Art) from 1975 to 1989.
  • Bibliography of Asian Studies (1973 to present)
    Index to articles and books in Asian Studies, including humanities and social sciences.
  • British Periodicals
    Searchable full text of hundreds of British periodicals from the late 17th century to the early 20th, with high-resolution facsimile page images.
  • Design and Applied Arts Index (DAAI) (1973 to present)
    Covers both new designers and the development of design and the applied arts since the mid-19th century.
  • Getty Publications Virtual Library
    Art historical research, exhibition catalogues, journals, and other full-text publications from the Getty Publications Archives.
  • International Bibliography of Art (IBA) (1973 to present)
    Covers scholarly literature on western art including traditional visual arts as well as new media, architectural history, museum studies and conservation, archaeology, and classical studies.
  • ITER: Gateway to the Middle Ages and Renaissance (1784 to present)
    Index of resources pertaining to the study of the Middle Ages & Renaissance
  • Oxford Islamic Studies Online
    Interdisciplinary reference content and commentary, plus Quranic materials, primary sources, images, maps, and timelines. Includes Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World and other core reference works on Islam.
  • Worldcat Art Libraries (1906 to present)
    Access to Worldcat content, including the articles database of 200 million records, specific to the visual arts. Includes information on which libraries hold the material.
    Full-text backfiles of over two thousand leading academic journals across the humanities, social sciences, and sciences. (Alumni access)

 For more databases, use the subject filter on A-Z Databases

Use these encyclopedias and reference works to get started on a topic.
Find images and streaming audio and video in these collections (also see the Images Research Guide, and the Web tab of this guide).
  • Amherst College Digital Collections
    Digitized art works, photographs, manuscripts, books, and other media from Amherst College Archives & Special Collections and the library’s Art & Architecture Collection.
  • ARTstor
    Image database including architecture, painting, sculpture, photography, decorative arts, and design as well as many other forms of visual culture.
  • Bridgeman Education
    A visual resource offering digital images of art, history, and culture from museums, galleries, private collections, and contemporary artists.
  • UbuWeb
    Large web-based educational resource for avant-garde material.
  • Aluka
    Digital resources and data in three major content areas: African Cultural Heritage Sites and Landscapes, The African Plants Initiative and Struggles for Freedom in Southern Africa.
  • Rhizome ArtBase
    An online archive of new media art.
Start with these recommended freely available resources in this discipline.
Also see the Primary Sources research guide.
  • Aluka
    Digital resources and data in three major content areas: African Cultural Heritage Sites and Landscapes, The African Plants Initiative and Struggles for Freedom in Southern Africa.
  • UbuWeb
    Large web-based educational resource for avant-garde material.
  • MetPublications (1964 to present)
    Full-text access to out-of-print exhibition catalogues, collection catalogues, museum guides, and educational materials from the the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
  • MoMA exhibitions archive online
    Information, images, and digitized catalogs and gallery text from exhibitions dating from the museum's founding in 1929 to the present.

The Sistine Chapel : paradise in Rome (Pfisterer, Ulrich, 1968-, author.) Frost Library; N2950 .P4913 2018

The artist in Edo Frost Library; N386.U5 S78 v.80

The art of curating : Paul J. Sachs and the Museum Course at Harvard (Duncan, Sally Anne, -2007, author.) Frost Library; N408 .D86 2018

Nazi exhibition design and modernism (Tymkiw, Michael, 1972- author.) Frost Library; N4396 .T96 2018

Tyrus : the Tyrus Wong story Frost Library; N44 .T97

Ferdinand Springer (Foster, Emmanuelle.) Frost Library; N44.S68763 F67 1995

Separating sheep from goats : Sherman E. Lee and Chinese art collecting in postwar America (Giuffrida, Noelle, author.) Frost Library; N5201 .G58 2018

Romanesque patrons and processes Frost Library; N5205.7.E85 R66 2018

Postscript : writing after conceptual art (Andersson, Andrea.) Frost Library; N6490 .A53 2018

Materiality Frost Library; N6490 .M337 2015

Art Deco Chicago : designing modern America Frost Library; N6494.A7 A6234 2018

Minimal conditions : light, space, and subjectivity (Schuld, Dawna L., 1964- author.) Frost Library; N6494.M5 S38 2018

A tale of two worlds Frost Library; N6502 .T35 2018

Concrete matters Frost Library; N6502.57.C65 C66 2018

An American odyssey : the life and work of Romare Bearden (Campbell, Mary Schmidt, author.) Frost Library; N6537.B4 C36 2018

Mark Bradford Frost Library; N6537.B6813 A4 2018b

Mary Corse : a survey in light (Conaty, Kim, author.) Frost Library; N6537.C663 A4 2018

Charles M. Russell : the women in his life and art Frost Library; N6537.R88 A4 2018

Jennifer Steinkamp : Blind eye Frost Library; N6537.S712 A4 2018 x

Sarah Sze : centrifuge Frost Library; N6537.S99 A4 2018

Artists on Andy Warhol Frost Library; N6537.W28 A85 2018

Weight of the earth : the tape journals of David Wojnarowicz (Wojnarowicz, David, author.) Frost Library; N6537.W63 A2 2018

Local invisibility, postcolonial feminisms : Asian American contemporary artists in California (Fantone, Laura, author.) Frost Library; N6538.A83 F36 2018

Unnamable : the ends of Asian American art (Min, Susette S., author.) Frost Library; N6538.A83 M56 2018

Faye HeavyShield : calling stones (conversations) (HeavyShield, Faye, 1953- artist.) Frost Library; N6549.H395 A4 2018

The noisemakers : Estridentismo, vanguardism, and social action in postrevolutionary Mexico (Klich, Lynda, author.) Frost Library; N6555.5.E76 K59 2018

Art and theory of post-1989 Central and Eastern Europe : a critical anthology Frost Library; N6758 .A749 2018

Globalizing East European art histories : past and present Frost Library; N6758 .G56 2018

Adel Abdessemed Frost Library; N6853.A22 A4 2018

Georges Bigot and Japan, 1882-1899 : satirist, illustrator and artist extraordinaire (Polak, Christian, 1950-) Frost Library; N6853.B475 P65 2018

Duchamp: by hand, even = Duchamp: à la main, même = Duchamp: mit der Hand, sogar (Molesworth, Helen Anne, author.) Frost Library; N6853.D8 M654 2017

Hans Bellmer, Max Ernst, Ferdinand Springer, Wols au camp des Milles Frost Library; N6868 .H344 2013

Günther Förg : a fragile beauty Frost Library; N6888.F62 G86 2018

Julian Rosefeldt : manifesto : a film installation in twelve scenes (Rosefeldt, Julian, artist.) Frost Library; N6888.R67 A4 2016

1600-1700 (Rijksmuseum (Netherlands), author, issuing body.) Frost Library; N6946 .R492 2018

Beyond the new : on the agency of things (Jongerius, Hella, artist, editor, writer of added text.) Frost Library; N6953.J664 A4 2018

The pond room and Staging silence 2 (Beeck, Hans Op de, 1969-) Frost Library; N6973.B44 A4 2017

Vis-à-vision : conversations with Russian artists, 1979-2013 (Agamov-Tupit͡syn, Viktor, author, interviewer.) Frost Library; N6988 .A326 2017

Revolution : Russian art 1917-1932 Frost Library; N6988.5.A83 R48 2017 x

Russian Dada : 1914-1924 Frost Library; N6988.5.A83 R89 2018

Ilya and Emilia Kabakov (Kabakov, Ilʹi︠a︡ Iosifovich, 1933-, artist.) Frost Library; N6999.K32 A4 2018 x

Pamela Rosenkranz : our product (Rosenkranz, Pamela.) Frost Library; N7153.R655 A4 2017

Pamela Rosenkranz : no core (Rosenkranz, Pamela.) Frost Library; N7153.R6675 A4 2012

Sophie Taeuber-Arp and the avant-garde : a biography (Mair, Roswitha, author.) Frost Library; N7153.T33 M313 2018

Militant eroticism : the ART+Positive archives Frost Library; N72.A34 M55 2017

Judenmord : art and the Holocaust in post-war Germany (Hoffmann-Curtius, Kathrin, author.) Frost Library; N72.H63 H6313 2018

Art and engagement in early postwar Japan (Jesty, Justin, 1974- author.) Frost Library; N72.P6 J47 2018

Protest : the aesthetics of resistance Frost Library; N72.P6 P76 2018

Introducing science through images : cases of visual popularization (Gigante, Maria E., author.) Frost Library; N72.S3 G54 2018

Latin American modernisms and technology Frost Library; N72.T4 L38 2018

Latiff Mohidin : Pago Pago (1960-1969) (National Gallery Singapore, owner, organizer, publisher.) Frost Library; N7325.8.M64 A4 2018

Experimental Beijing : gender and globalization in Chinese contemporary art (Welland, Sasha Su-Ling, 1969-, author.) Frost Library; N7345.6 .W46 2018

Ai Weiwei : sunflower seeds (Ai, Weiwei.) Frost Library; N7349.A5 A4 2010

Japan : its architecture, art, and art manufactures (Dresser, Christopher, author.) Frost Library; N7350.D747 J37 2016

Luluwa : Central African art between heaven and earth (Petridis, Constantijn.) Frost Library; N7399.C6 P48 2018 x

Artists and their books : books and their artists (Reed, Marcia, 1945-, author.) Frost Library; N7433.3 .R44 2018 x

Selected durations. (Abel, David, author.) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.A247 S45 2016 x

A tale from beginningless time (Argetsinger, Sophie, author.) Frost Library; N7433.4.A73 T364 2014

Printed Matter box set (Printed Matter, Inc.) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.P76 P75 2014 xx

Liminal matter : fences (Winter, Laura, author.) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.W5677 L56 2014 xx

Emissaries guide to worlding (Cheng, Ian, 1984- artist, author, conceptor.) Frost Library; N7433.85.C44 E45 2018

Worldmaking as techné : participatory art, music, and architecture Frost Library; N7433.915 .W67 2018

Observation : notation : selected writings of Andrew Forge (1955-2002) (Forge, Andrew, author.) Frost Library; N7445.2 .F67 2018

Obsession : nudes by Klimt, Schiele, and Picasso from the Scofield Thayer Collection (Rewald, Sabine.) Frost Library; N7572 .R49 2018

Voir le corps dans l'Espagne d'aujourd'hui : image espagnole contemporaine Frost Library; N7625.5 .V65 2003

Selling Andrew Jackson : Ralph E. W. Earl and the politics of portraiture (Stephens, Rachel (Rachel Elizabeth) author.) Frost Library; N7628.J33 S4 2018

Trees in art (Watkins, C., author.) Frost Library; N7680 .W38 2018

Flying too close to the sun : myths in art from classical to contemporary Frost Library; N7760 .F595 2018 x

English aristocratic women and the fabric of piety, 1450-1550 (Harris, Barbara J. (Barbara Jean), 1942-, author.) Frost Library; N7862 .H37 2018

Sacred stimulus : Jerusalem in the visual Christianization of Rome (Noga-Banai, Galit, 1966-, author.) Frost Library; N7952.R6 N64 2018

Weaving cultures : the invention of colonial art and culture in the Philippines, 1565-1850 (Javellana, René B., author.) Frost Library; N7981.A1 J38 2016

Word embodied : the jeweled pagoda mandalas in Japanese Buddhist art (O'Neal, Halle, author.) Frost Library; N8193.3.M3 O54 2018

Fashion drive : extreme clothing in the visual arts Frost Library; N8217.F33 F37 2018

One hand clapping Frost Library; N8217.F87 O54 2018

Committed to memory : the art of the slave ship icon (Finley, Cheryl, author.) Frost Library; N8243.S576 F56 2018

Natural wonders : the sublime in contemporary art : thirteen artists explore nature's limits Frost Library; N8251.S554 N38 2018

Witches & wicked bodies (Petherbridge, Deanna, 1939-, author.) Frost Library; N8262.7 .P48 2013 x

Learning things : material culture in art education (Blandy, Douglas Emerson, 1951-, author.) Frost Library; N87 .B59 2018

The mediated mind : affect, ephemera, and consumerism in the nineteenth century (Zieger, Susan Marjorie, author.) Frost Library; NC1280 .Z54 2018

The condition of being here : drawings by Jasper Johns (Johns, Jasper, 1930-, artist.) Frost Library; NC139.J58 A4 2018

Gary Larson and the Far Side (Soper, Kerry, author.) Frost Library; NC1429.L32 S67 2018

Album art : new music graphics (Foster, John, 1971-, author.) Frost Library; NC1882 .F67 2018

Frida Kahlo : making her self up Frost Library; ND259.K33 A4 2018

Conversations with Diego Rivera : the monster in his labyrinth (Cardona Peña, Alfredo, interviewer.) Frost Library; ND259.R5 A35 2018

Stratégies figuratives dans l'art juif : étude de trois haggadot sépharades du XIVe siècle (Hazan, Olga, 1956-, author.) Frost Library; ND3380.4.H33 H39 2017

El libro de los caprichos, Francisco de Goya (Goya, Francisco, 1746-1828.) Frost Library; NE2062.5.G6 A4 1999 xx

Goya : des délits et des peines (Domergue, Lucienne.) Frost Library; NE2062.5.G6 D66 2000

Arts of allusion : object, ornament, and architecture in medieval Islam (Graves, Margaret S., author.) Frost Library; NK1270 .G73 2018

Flow : interior, landscape and architecture in the era of liquid modernity Frost Library; NK1505 .F59 2018

Designs for the pluriverse : radical interdependence, autonomy, and the making of worlds (Escobar, Arturo, 1951-, author.) Frost Library; NK1520 .E83 2018

The Wallace Collection : catalogue of furniture (Wallace Collection (London, England).) Frost Library; NK2216.G7 L668 1996

European porcelain : in The Metropolitan Museum of Art (Munger, Jeffrey H.) Frost Library; NK4483 .M86 2018

Frauentänze für Dionysos : in der spätarachaischen Vasenmalerei Athens (Manakidou, Helenē P., author.) Frost Library; NK4650.D8 M36 2017

Around Chigusa : tea and the arts of sixteenth-century Japan Frost Library; NK4695.S76 A76 2017

Crossroads : travelling through the Middle Ages, AD 300-1000 Frost Library; NK520.N4 C76 2017

The great east window of York Minster : an English masterpiece (Brown, Sarah, 1958-, author.) Frost Library; NK5344.Y6 B76 2018

The Wallace Collection : catalogue of gold boxes (Truman, Charles.) Frost Library; NK7109.65 .T786 2013 x

Sølv (Mikkelsen, Frodo.) Archives and Special Collections; NK7198.M55 A4 2011

Sølv (Mikkelsen, Frodo.) Frost Library; NK7198.M55 A4 2011

Fabergé and the Russian crafts tradition : an empire's legacy (Trombly, Margaret Kelly, 1949-, author.) Frost Library; NK7401.B35 W35 2017