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.

Shōsōin ten : dai 69-kai = The 69th Annual Exhibition of Shōsō-in Treasures Frost Library; N3750.N36 A52 2017

Shōsōin ten : dai 69-kai = The 69th Annual Exhibition of Shōsō-in Treasures Frost Library; N3750.N36 A522 2017

Shōsōin ten posutā Frost Library; N3750.N36 A63 2014

Shinpin shiho Frost Library; N3750.T32 S55 2014

History as art, art as history : contemporary art and social studies education (Desai, Dipti.) Frost Library; N380 .D47 2010

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

The development of the art collection of Amherst College, 1821- 1971 (Morgan, Charles H. (Charles Hill), 1902-1984.) Archives and Special Collections; N512.A55 M6 1972

Double vision : the unerring eye of art world avatars Dominique and John de Menil (Middleton, William, 1961-, author.) Frost Library; N5220.M555 M53 2018

Lily Pastré : la Bonne-Mère des artistes (Kressmann, Laure.) Frost Library; N5262.P37 K74 2014

Art patronage, family, and gender in Renaissance Florence : the Tornabuoni (DePrano, Maria, 1967-, author.) Frost Library; N5273.2.T67 D47 2018

Usami korekushon sōmokuroku = The catalogue raisonné of the Usami Collection Frost Library; N5285.J32 U83 2014

Art history after Deleuze and Guattari Frost Library; N5300 .A783 2017

Beyond the Nile : Egypt and the classical world Frost Library; N5603.L67 J253 2018

The frame in classical art : a cultural history Frost Library; N5610 .F73 2017

The globalization of Renaissance art : a critical review Frost Library; N6370 .G49 2017

Historical dictionary of Baroque art and architecture (Zirpolo, Lilian H., author.) Frost Library; N6415.B3 Z57 2018

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

Keep it moving? Frost Library; N6494.K5 K44 2018

Video writings by artists : (1970-1990) Frost Library; N6494.V53 V532 2017

Streetopia Frost Library; N6496.S22 S77 2015

Streetopia Archives and Special Collections; N6496.S22 S77 2015

Making the Americas modern : hemispheric art, 1910-1960 (Sullivan, Edward J., author.) Frost Library; N6501 .S85 2018

American modernism : highlights from the Philadelphia Museum of Art (Philadelphia Museum of Art, author.) Frost Library; N6512.5.M63 P49 2018

Learning to read with John Baldessari (Baldessari, John, 1931-) Frost Library; N6537.B17 A4 2017

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

Walter De Maria : The lightning field Frost Library; N6537.D432 A68 2017b x

Ellen Gallagher Frost Library; N6537.G347 A4 2017

Keith Haring : the boy who just kept drawing (Haring, Kay, author.) Frost Library; N6537.H348 H37 2017

Roni Horn. Frost Library; N6537.H644 A4 2017

Bruce Nauman : disappearing acts Frost Library; N6537.N38 A4 2018

Howardena Pindell : what remains to be seen Frost Library; N6537.P49 A4 2018

Adrian Piper : a synthesis of intuitions, 1965-2016 Frost Library; N6537.P5 A4 2018

Adrian Piper (Piper, Adrian, 1948-) Frost Library; N6537.P5 A4 2018b

Carolee Schneemann : uncollected texts (Schneemann, Carolee, 1939-, author.) Frost Library; N6537.S3556 A35 2018

Taryn Simon : an occupation of loss Frost Library; N6537.S563 A4 2017

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

Beyond Mammy, Jezebel & Sapphire : reclaiming images of Black women Frost Library; N6538.N5 B49 2016

Structural adjustments : Kapwani Kiwanga (Kiwanga, Kapwani, 1978-, artist.) Frost Library; N6549.K59 A4 2018

Mexican costumbrismo : race, society, and identity in nineteenth-century art (Moriuchi, Mey-Yen, 1974-, author.) Frost Library; N6554 .M67 2018

Grupos y espacios en México Frost Library; N6557.M4 G78 2017

Matta in the 1950s and 1960s. (Matta, 1912-2002, artist.) Frost Library; N6669.M38 A4 2015

Gilbert & George Frost Library; N6797.G47 A4 2017 xx

Katie Holten (Holten, Katie.) Frost Library; N6797.H658 A4 2007

Lost libraries : Abigail Reynolds' art journey (Reynolds, Abigail, 1975-) Frost Library; N6797.R49 A2 2017

Klimt and Schiele : drawings : from the Albertina Museum, Vienna Frost Library; N6808.5.M64 K55 2018 x

Litterature (Picabia, Francis, 1879-1953, author, artist.) Frost Library; N6853.P48 A4 2017

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

Inventur : art in Germany, 1943-55 Frost Library; N6868 .I62 2018

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

Jenseits der Repräsentation : essays 1999-2009 = Beyond representation (Steyerl, Hito, author.) Frost Library; N6888.S782 A35 2016

Behind the mask : artists in the GDR Frost Library; N6889 .B45 2017

Arte povera Frost Library; N6918.5.A73 A79 2018

Livio Orazio Valentini : an artist's spiritual odyssey (Alexander, Robert E., author.) Frost Library; N6923.V26 A84 2018 x

Claudy Jongstra (Jongstra, Claudy, 1963-) Frost Library; N6953.J66 A4 2017 x

Cosmic shift : Russian contemporary art writing Frost Library; N6988 .C67 2017

More than meets the eye : what blindness brings to art (Kleege, Georgina, 1956-, author.) Frost Library; N71.8 .K59 2018

Frederic Amat_Zoótropo (Amat, Frederic, 1952-, artist.) Frost Library; N7113.A597 A4 2017

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

Border spaces : visualizing the U.S.-Mexico frontera Frost Library; N72.S6 B58 2018

Roman artists, patrons, and public consumption : familiar works reconsidered Frost Library; N72.S6 R64 2018

Hack the grid Frost Library; N72.T4 H33 2017

Efrat Natan Frost Library; N7279.N38 A4 2017

Semiotic warfare : a semiotic analysis, the Chinese avant-garde, 1979-1989 (Köppel-Yang, Martina.) Frost Library; N7345 .K67 2003

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

Humanity (Ai, Weiwei, author.) Frost Library; N7349.A5 A35 2018

Yamato no kinsei bijutsu : tokubetsuten Frost Library; N7353.5 .Y35 1991

Koten saisei Frost Library; N7355 .K68 2016

Inoue Minoru ten = Minoru Inoue : Nara ni miserarete : zuroku (Inoue, Minoru, 1936- 井上稔, 1936-) Frost Library; N7359.I6685 A4 2011

Anata no shōzō (Kudō, Tetsumi, 1935-1990 artist. 工藤哲巳, 1935-1990, artist.) Frost Library; N7359.K82 A4 2013

Miguk Siaet'ŭl Pangmulgwan sujang Han'guk munhwajae = Korean art collection in the Seattle Art Muse Frost Library; N7362 .M57 2015

Vision and art : the biology of seeing (Livingstone, Margaret, author.) Frost Library; N7430.5 .L54 2014

Escape to Berlin : a travel memoir = Flucht nach Berlin : eine Reiseerinnerung (Piper, Adrian, 1948-, artist.) Frost Library; N7433.4 .P57 E83 2018

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

The secret astronomy of Tristram Shandy (Ancliffe, Abra, book artist.) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.A49 S43 2015

Rise up (Bowman, Kelie.) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.B69 R65 2015

Rise up (Bowman, Kelie.) Frost Library; N7433.4.B69 R65 2015

Secret Box (Kérozen, Eugène, 1968-) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.K472 S43 2012

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

How the West was won. Copyright applied for (Schulz, David, 1967-, artist.) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.S38 H69 2013

How the West was won. Copyright applied for (Schulz, David, 1967-, artist.) Frost Library; N7433.4.S38 H69 2013

Lone wolf (Schulz, David, 1967-, artist) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.S38 L66 2012

Lone wolf (Schulz, David, 1967-, artist) Frost Library; N7433.4.S38 L66 2012

The terrorist's handbook (Schulz, David, 1967-) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.S38 T47 2011

The terrorist's handbook (Schulz, David, 1967-) Frost Library; N7433.4.S38 T47 2011

Traverse! (Schulz, David, 1967-) Archives and Special Collections; N7433.4.S38 T73 2010

Traverse! (Schulz, David, 1967-) Frost Library; N7433.4.S38 T73 2010 x

Traditional Cornish cottages (Williams, Michael, 1978-, artist.) Frost Library; N7433.4.W537 T73 2017

Harald Szeemann : selected writings (Szeemann, Harald, author.) Frost Library; N7445.2 .S9413 2018

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

Divine bodies : sacred imagery in Asian art Frost Library; N7625.5 .D58 2018

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

Natural histories : traces of the political Frost Library; N7650 .N38 2017

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

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

1000-nenki tokubetsuten, Genshin Frost Library; N8193.3.H44 G46 2017

Kyūshūbutsu : 1300-nen no inori to katachi : Buddhist sculpture of Kyushu region Frost Library; N8193.A3 K98 2014

Yakushiji no meiga Frost Library; N8193.A3 N378 2018 xx

Bukkyō bijutsu ronshū Frost Library; N8193.A4 B845

Onmatsuri to Kasuga shinkō no bijutsu Frost Library; N8194.A3 N37 2017