Contact us via live chat, phone or e-mail.
Or check our FAQ.

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
  • Databases
  • Reference
  • Media
  • Web
  • Primary Sources
  • New Titles
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 Full Text
    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.
  • Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals (1934 to present)
    Indexes more than 2,000 periodicals on archaeology, city planning, interior design, and historic preservation.
  • 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)
  • 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 one thousand leading academic journals across the humanities, social sciences, and sciences. (Alumni access)


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.
  • Ubu-Web
    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.
  • Ubu-Web
    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.

Habsburg splendor (Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, organizer.) Frost Library; N1677 .A56 2015

(Curating) from A to Z (Hoffmann, Jens, 1974-) Frost Library; N408 .H63 2014

A history of the Asiatic Department (Tomita, Kojiro, 1890-1976.) Frost Library; N520 .T66 1990

From ancient to modern : archaeology and aesthetics Frost Library; N5370 .F76x 2015

Shaky ground : context, connoisseurship and the history of Roman art (Marlowe, Elizabeth M., author.) Frost Library; N5763 .M37 2013

Les images dans l'Occident médiéval Frost Library; N5975 .I423 2015

The shape of evidence : contemporary art and the document (Berrebi, Sophie, author.) Frost Library; N6350 .B47 2014

Freak art scrapbook : Chicago's Armory show in print, 1913 Frost Library; N6448.A74 F74 2013 xx

Parallel views : Italian and Japanese art from the 1950s, 60s, and 70s Frost Library; N6487.D35 P37 2014 xx

POP : pop art myths (Alarcó, Paloma, author, curator.) Frost Library; N6494.P6 A43 2014

Post pop : East meets West Frost Library; N6494.P6 P6785 2014

Surround audience : New Museum Triennial 2015 (New Museum Triennial (2015 : New York, NY)) Frost Library; N6496.N4 N498 2015

L'art américain : identités d'une nation Frost Library; N6510 .A69 2005

Art from the trenches : America's uniformed artists in World War I (Cornebise, Alfred E., author.) Frost Library; N6512 .C598 2014 x

The living line : modern art and the economy of energy (Veder, Robin, 1968-, author.) Frost Library; N6512.5.M63 V43 2015

Visual art and the urban evolution of the New South (Pollack, Deborah C., author.) Frost Library; N6520 .P65 2015

Record of works by Winslow Homer (Goodrich, Lloyd, 1897-1987.) Frost Library; N6537 .H58 A4 2005 x

Cory Arcangel : all the small things Frost Library; N6537.A6397 A4x 2014

Charles Atlas (Atlas, Charles, artist, author.) Frost Library; N6537.A86 A4 2015 x

Painter and Pataphysician Thomas Chimes (Shaw, Mari.) Frost Library; N6537.C4915 S53 2015

Dorothy Iannone : censorship and the irrepressible drive toward love and divinity (Iannone, Dorothy, artist, writer of added commentary.) Frost Library; N6537.I26 A4x 2014

Monet Frost Library; N6537.K38 A4 2014b

Folklore U.S. (Price, Seth.) Frost Library; N6537.P694 A4 2014b

Richard Prince : it's a free concert (Prince, Richard, 1949-) Frost Library; N6537.P695 A4 2014 x

Man Ray : human equations : a journey from mathematics to Shakespeare Frost Library; N6537.R3 A4 2015

The hidden world : Jim Shaw : didactic art collection Frost Library; N6537.S52239 A4 2014

The essential Cy Twombly Frost Library; N6537.T96 E87 2014

Lygia Pape : magnetized space (Pape, Lygia, artist.) Frost Library; N6659.P32 A4 2014

Tonight no poetry will serve : Alfredo Jaar = Kun runous ei riitä : Alfredo Jaar (Jaar, Alfredo, artist.) Frost Library; N6669.J33 A4 2014

Formalism and historicity : models and methods in twentieth-century art (Buchloh, B. H. D., author.) Frost Library; N6758 .B833 2015

Antipolitics in Central European art (Kemp-Welch, Klara, author.) Frost Library; N6758 .K467 2014

Ireland : crossroads of art and design, 1690-1840 Frost Library; N6787 .I74 2015

Richard Hamilton Frost Library; N6797.H3 A4 2014 x

The blue cupboard : inspirations and recollections (Jaray, Tess, 1937-, author.) Frost Library; N6797.J37 A2 2014

Imagination, idea : the beginning of Hungarian conceptual art, the László Beke collection, 1971 Frost Library; N6820.5.C62 I43 2014

The Czech files (Obrist, Hans Ulrich.) Frost Library; N6831 .C9945 2014

Pierre Huyghe (Huyghe, Pierre, 1962-, artist.) Frost Library; N6853.H88 A4 2014

Isa Genzken Frost Library; N6888.G459 I83 2015

Rebecca Horn : cosmic maps (Horn, Rebecca, 1944-) Frost Library; N6888.H68 A4 2008 x

Sasha Waltz : objekte, installationen, performances = objects, installations, performances (Waltz, Sasha, artist, choreographer.) Frost Library; N6888.W35 A4 2014 x

Mural (Wirthmann, Markus, 1963-, artist.) Archives and Special Collections; N6888.W544 A4 2014 x

Mural (Wirthmann, Markus, 1963-, artist.) Frost Library; N6888.W544 A4 2014 x

Azimut Frost Library; N6918 .A9513 2015

Art of Renaissance Venice 1400-1600 (Partridge, Loren W., author.) Frost Library; N6921.V5 P28 2015 x

Still lives : death, desire, and the portrait of the old master (Loh, Maria H., 1971-) Frost Library; N6922 .L65 2015

Futurist Depero : 1913-1950 (Depero, Fortunato, 1892-1960, artist.) Frost Library; N6923.D44 A4 2014

Pleasure and piety : the art of Joachim Wtewael Frost Library; N6953.W79 A4 2015

Russia! [videorecording] : the drama of art : in twelve episodes Frost Library; N6981 .R88

Vladimir Markov and Russian primitivism : a charter for the avant-garde (Howard, Jeremy, author, translator.) Frost Library; N6988.5.P7 H69 2015

Ilya Kabakov : drawings = dessins (Kabakov, Ilʹi︠a︡ Iosifovich, 1933-) Frost Library; N6999.K23 A4 2014

Noonday (Strba, Annelies.) Frost Library; N7153.S77 A4x 2015

Istanbul exchanges : Ottomans, orientalists, and nineteenth-century visual culture (Roberts, Mary, 1965-, author.) Frost Library; N7167 .R63 2015

Ethics Frost Library; N72.E8 E845 2015

The Parisian avant-garde in the age of cinema, 1900-1923 (Wild, Jennifer, 1972-, author.) Frost Library; N72.M6 W55 2015

For a new world to come Frost Library; N72.P5 F67 2015 x

The art of destruction (Brener, Aleksandr, author, artist.) Frost Library; N72.P6 B746 2005

Politically unbecoming : postsocialist art against democracy (Gardner, Anthony, 1976-, author.) Frost Library; N72.P6 G375 2015

Art and protest in Putin's Russia (Jonson, Lena, 1948-, author.) Frost Library; N72.P6 J66 2015

Politics personified : portraiture, caricature and visual culture in Britain, c. 1830-80 (Miller, Henry, author.) Frost Library; N72.P6 M55 2015

Dancing with the unconscious : the art of psychoanalysis and the psychoanalysis of art (Knafo, Danielle.) Frost Library; N72.P74 K63 2012

Art scenes : the social scripts of the art world (Helguera, Pablo.) Frost Library; N72.S6 H386 2012

Visual culture in contemporary China : paradigms and shifts (Tang, Xiaobing, 1964-, author.) Frost Library; N72.S6 T36 2015

Art and antiquity in the Netherlands and Britain (Weststeijn, Thijs, author.) Frost Library; N72.S6 W485 2015

Moshe Gershuni : no father, no mother (Gershuni, Moshe, artist.) Frost Library; N7279.G47 A4x 2014

Sultans of Deccan India, 1500-1700 : opulence and fantasy (Haidar, Navina Najat, author.) Frost Library; N7307.D4 H35 2015

Bali : island of the gods (Maxwell, Robyn J., author.) Frost Library; N7326.6.B35 M39x 2014

The China collectors : America's century-long hunt for Asian art treasures (Meyer, Karl E. (Karl Ernest), 1937- author.) Frost Library; N7340 .M475 2015

The Mongol century : visual cultures of Yuan China, 1271-1368 (McCausland, Shane, 1968-, author.) Frost Library; N7343.4 .M39 2015

@Large : Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz (Ai, Weiwei, artist.) Frost Library; N7349.A5 A4 2014 x

Odyssey of culture : Wenda Gu and his art (Zhou, Yan.) Frost Library; N7349.G8 Z46 2015

Handbook of Japanese art (Tsuda, Noritake.) Frost Library; N7350 .T73 1936

On Kawara -- silence (Weiss, Jeffrey S.) Frost Library; N7359.K38 A4 2015 xx

Yayoi Kusama : I who have arrived in heaven (Kusama, Yayoi, 1929-) Frost Library; N7359.K87 A4 2014 xx

Between action and the unknown : the art of Kazuo Shiraga and Sadamasa Motonaga Frost Library; N7359.S558 A4 2015

Korean art : articles from Orientations 1970-2013 Frost Library; N7360 .K6335 2014

News from nowhere (Moon, Kyungwon, 1969- artist.) Frost Library; N7369.M66 A4 2013

Postcolonial modernism : art and decolonization in twentieth-century Nigeria (Okeke-Agulu, Chika.) Frost Library; N7399.N5 O394 2014

Fantasies of the library Frost Library; N7433.3 .F36 2015

Draft notation (Bervin, Jen, artist.) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.B47 D73 2014

Meskel Demera : the finding of the True Cross (Bogardus, Peter.) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.B64 M47 2008

According to plan (Kovitz, Rob, 1963-, author, artist.) Frost Library; N7433.K68 A23 2014

Past futures : science fiction, space travel, and postwar art of the Americas Frost Library; N8239.S66 P37 2015

Fernweh : a travelling curators' project Frost Library; N8258 .F47 2014

Akademie X : lessons in art + life Frost Library; N8350 A53 2015

Women's work is never done : an anthology (Zegher, M. Catherine de.) Frost Library; N8354 .Z44 2014

In the studio. Frost Library; N8520 .I52 2015 x

The matter of art : materials, practices, cultural logics, c. 1250-1750 Frost Library; N8530 .M38 2015

Out of time, out of place : public art (now) Frost Library; N8825 .O87 2015

Kindai Nihon chōkoku shūsei Frost Library; NB1054 .K56 2010

Chto Delat : time capsule : artistic report on catastophes and utopias Frost Library; NC1807.R9 C567 2014

Drawn with spirit : Pennsylvania German Fraktur from the Joan and Victor Johnson Collection (Minardi, Lisa, 1983-, author.) Frost Library; ND3035.P4 M56 2015 x

Meisaku ni miru Nihon hanga Frost Library; NE1321.4 .M38 1987

Surimono from the Chester Beatty Collection (Keyes, Roger S.) Frost Library; NE1321.8 .K489 1987

Fresh impressions : early modern Japanese prints (Putney, Carolyn M., author.) Frost Library; NE1323.7.S55 P88 2013 x

Andō Hiroshige, 100 famous views of Edo (Elvehjem Museum of Art.) Frost Library; NE1325.A5 A4 1982

Woodblock prints (Hiratsuka, Un'ichi, 1895-1997.) Frost Library; NE1325.H57 A4 1986

Utamaro ten : ukiyoe no iki Frost Library; NE1325.K5 A4 1977

Munakata : Munakata Shikō, 1903-1975, the woodcut genius of Japan (Munakata, Shikō, 1903-1975. 棟方志功, 1903-1975.) Frost Library; NE1325.M8 A4 1987

What about Kunisada? = Kunisada wa dō desu ga? (Doesburg, Jan van.) Frost Library; NE1325.T7 D6 1990

Making design : Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum collection Frost Library; NK1320 .C6984 2014