The official bulletin of the Art Libraries Society of North America, 1982-present.

Art Documentation is the official bulletin of the Art Libraries Society of North America, 1982-present. It includes articles and information relevant to art librarianship and visual resources curatorship. Since 1996, it has been published twice yearly (spring and fall). The subscription to Art Documentation is included as part of membership in ARLIS/NA. Authors who wish to publish their work in Art Documentation should consult the Contributor Guidelines.

Art Documentation is published for ARLIS/NA by University of Chicago Press, which supports green open access for all of its journals. Authors may self-archive their own articles and make them freely available through institutional repositories after a one-year embargo. Authors may also post their articles in their published form on their personal or departmental web pages or personal social media pages, use the article in teaching or research presentations, provide single copies in print or electronic form to their colleagues, or republish the article in a subsequent work, subject to giving proper credit to the original publication of the article in Art Documentation, including reproducing the exact copyright notice as it appears in the journal.

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Tables of Contents

To search Art Documentation contents 1982-present, go to the journal home page.

 

2017: Volume 37

Issue 1 / Spring

 

2017: Volume 36

Issue 1 / Spring
Issue 2 / Fall

2016: Volume 35

Issue 1 / Spring
Issue 2 / Fall

2015: Volume 34

Issue 1 / Spring
Issue 2 / Fall

2014: Volume 33

Issue 1 / Spring
Issue 2 / Fall

2013: Volume 32

Issue 1 / Spring
Issue 2 / Fall

2012: Volume 31

Issue 1 / Spring
Issue 2 / Fall

2011: Volume 30

Issue 1 / Spring
Issue 2 / Fall

2010: Volume 29

Issue 1 / Spring
Issue 2 / Fall

2009: Volume 28

Issue 1 / Spring
Issue 2 / Fall

2008: Volume 27

Issue 1 / Spring
Issue 2 / Fall

Current Issue Abstracts

Art Documentation vol. 37, no. 1 (Spring 2018)

Bouzouki Music: Allan Sekula and the Comics
Penny Baker

Abstract—In 2015, art historian Sally Stein made the gift of the Allan Sekula Library to the Clark Institute in memory of her husband Allan Sekula (1951-2013). An internationally known artist, photographer, filmmaker, and writer, Sekula is recognized as a public intellectual, trenchant art critic, and critical theorist. He is also known for the social commentary, criticism, and activism that informed his life and work. This article considers a representative sample of comic and graphic novel titles found in the Allan Sekula Library and provides an analysis of complementary materials in the Allan Sekula Archive now held by the Getty Research Institute. From the dark heroism of the worker in the early books-without-words of Giacomo Patri and Frans Masereel to the vulgar staccato bouzouki and priapic productions of Robert Crumb and S. Clay Wilson, the author examines the comic, manga, and graphic materials used by Allan Sekula as both subject and “object of interest” in his physical installations, films, essays, and teaching. 

“Make Visible the Otherwise”: Queering the Art Library
Sylvia Page

Abstract—Using methods from library and information science in conjunction with art and art history, the author explores the challenges and possibilities associated with “queering” the art library. The author underlines the importance of providing access to materials relating to non-normative sexualities, genders, and identities and suggests that queer art and theory can intersect to critique traditional library structures. This is demonstrated through a description and analysis of a course-long collaboration in a Memphis College of Art art history class in which students produced finding aids for the library on topics relating to gender and sexuality in art. 

Florentine Renaissance Drawings: A Linked Catalog for the Semantic Web
Lukas Klic, Jonathan K. Nelson, M. Cristina Pattuelli, Alexandra Provo

Abstract—The Drawings of the Florentine Painters by Bernard Berenson has been an essential source for art historians since it first appeared in 1903 and remains so today. Though many catalogs of drawings exist for individual collections and artists, Berenson’s study is the only resource that includes examples from across the Western world by nearly seventy Florentine painters, from Taddeo Gaddi in the fourteenth century through Bronzino in the sixteenth. The Florentine Renaissance Drawings project makes Berenson’s invaluable catalog information available in a machine-readable format. As with most projects that transform textual art documentation into digital editions, the authors faced challenges in maintaining a balance between making data scalable and preserving the nuances of the original text. This study demonstrates how Linked Open Data (LOD) technology allows one to maintain the complexity of source data while allowing for standardization of terms and concepts. 

Establishing an Open-Access MFA Thesis Collection
Jennifer Akins

Abstract—Open-access MFA theses give students the opportunity to publish and establish their work in the public sphere. While providing visibility and preservation of their work, they also serve as a resource for future scholars and their university communities. This article documents the process of working with the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts’ Graduate School of Art at Washington University in St. Louis to disseminate and archive its written MFA theses and related files. Even with an established institutional repository, special considerations for visual art theses must be addressed, including image copyright and privacy and creative concerns. In addition to the team effort on campus, the Art Libraries Society of North America (ARLIS/NA) community responses to a survey proved instrumental when approaching the school and developing an initial plan. 

An Unparalleled Opportunity: Creating an Inventory of the Print Collection at the Boston Public Library
Martha R. Mahard

Abstract—In the spring of 2015, the author was asked to organize and direct a comprehensive inventory of the large and distinguished collection of prints at the Boston Public Library. Working with the staff of the BPL and a corps of graduate students, the team located, described, and prepared for digitization a diverse collection of prints, posters, chromolithographs, drawings, and ephemera, once regarded as among the best collections in the United States. The collection was understaffed, neglected, and adrift in a great public library that struggled to balance its commitment to public service with its status as a major national research library. This article describes the project and the next steps for the collection. 

Collecting, Organizing, and Teaching the Ephemera of Art Biennials
Alexander Watkins and Jane Thaler

Abstract—Art fairs and biennials have become an essential part of the story of contemporary art and architecture. Ephemeral handouts, pamphlets, and posters−a hallmark of these gatherings−have the potential to help students and researchers understand these events if preserved for future use. However, libraries and archives that want to collect ephemeral material from biennials face several challenges, including the difficulty of collecting these materials remotely, developing appropriate methods to best organize this type of material, and determining the best way to present these materials to students and scholars. This article describes a case study at the University of Colorado Boulder of creating an archival collection of ephemera from biennials. 

The Pedagogical Value of Provenance Research in Rare book and Cultural Heritage Collections
Kiana Jones

Abstract—Provenance research in rare book and cultural heritage collections has pedagogical value that should encourage information professionals to incorporate it into their research and teaching practice. Its value extends to building deeper connections with faculty and students and enriching the body of knowledge surrounding the collection. This article reviews the literature addressing the value of provenance research in rare book collections and discusses a case study of provenance research at the Frick Fine Arts Library at the University of Pittsburgh. Evidence of value is provided through the resulting curriculum collaboration and knowledge development. 

Using Learning Outcomes to Create Activities for Artists’ Books Instruction
Sara DeWaay

Abstract—The author provides ideas for combining active learning principles with artists’ books instruction in libraries by defining specific and measurable learning outcomes using the ABCD method. This results in active pedagogy by fostering the creation of activities that teach students a deeper understanding of artists’ books. The article describes three activities used at the University of Oregon, with the goal of bringing artists’ books pedagogy in line with learner-focused library instruction and starting a conversation with other librarians who teach with artists’ books.

The Collecting Practices for Art Exhibition Catalogs at Academic Libraries in the United States and Canada
Andi Back

Abstract—Reporting on the results of a survey conducted in spring 2017, the author offers insight into the contemporary trends and challenges of collecting US, Canadian, and European print and digital art exhibition catalogs by academic art librarians in the United States and Canada. Findings demonstrate that for academic institutions with programs in art history, fine arts, or design, exhibition catalogs are a collection priority. Due to the variety of publishers of art exhibition catalogs, specialized knowledge to identify and acquire these resources is required.