Art History

Searching for Art Books in the Library

Libraries use specialized language to describe the materials in their collections. When searching the library catalog, try these searches:

  • Artist’s name
  • Movement/Style/Period (e.g. Impressionism)
  • Location/Region and Technique/Medium (e.g. Japanese Painting)
  • Any of the above AND Themes, motives 
  • Any of the above AND Criticism and interpretation 

Where to Find Art Books in the FHG Library

Our Library use the Dewey Decimal System to organize library materials. Most art books will be found on the 5th floor of FHG Library. Don't forget to check the Oversize stacks ("Q" in front of the call number)

  • 700s The Arts - General
  • 710s Civic & landscape art
  • 720s Architecture
  • 730s Plastic arts, sculpture
  • 740s Drawing & decorative arts
  • 750s Painting & paintings
  • 760s Graphic arts, printmaking & prints
  • 770s Photography & photographs

A&A ePortal

Tip! ILL

If you cannot find what you need in the WCU Library, you can use Interlibrary Loan.

Interlibrary Loan (ILL) is a free service for WCU students, faculty, and staff that gets you a book, article, or other material not available at West Chester University Libraries. We work with libraries around the world to get you what you need!

Types of Art Books

Exhibition Catalogs
These publications accompany museum or gallery exhibits and often include high-quality images, artist biographies, interviews and/or career chronologies.

Use your artist's name AND exhibitions as keywords when searching for exhibition catalogs.

Catalogue Raisonne

A catalogue raisonne contains a thorough chronology of biographical events, images, descriptions of work and usually notes about provenance and a bibliography. A complete study, it can focus on an artist's entire body of work or work in a specific medium or time period.

Use your artist's name  AND catalogue raisonne when searching for these books.

Artists Monographs

These books about artists are published separately from exhibition catalogs and catalogue raisonne but include high-quality images typically with some contextual information.

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