Art + Design

The Library is a great place to find inspiration. In addition to thousands of books, journals, and videos documenting artists, art movements and technique, there is access to unlimited cross disciplinary topics; Printing services and media equipment are available in the IMC; The Special Collections department is home to unique print and digital materials.
For more detailed information about art historical research, please visit the Art History Research Guide.

Searching for resources in the Library

Libraries use specialized language to describe the materials in their collections. When searching a library catalog, observe the words or tags used most. Collect the tags from your best results to help build a strong search strategy. Try these searches:

Artist’s name
Movement/Style/Period (e.g. Impressionism)
Location/Region and Technique/Medium (e.g. Japanese Painting)
Artist’s name AND Themes, motives 
Artist’s name AND Criticism and interpretation 
Artist's name AND exhibitions
Artist's name  AND catalogue raisonne

Where are the art books?

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

Contact Information

Profile Photo
Rachel McMullin
F.H. Green Library, Room 209

Library Databases for Art research

The search box on the Libraries' homepage is a great place to start your research - it offers a wide variety of results in one place. ARTstor and Oxford Art Online are important art resources that do not work well in this search so it is better to access them directly. Direct access to all our Art databases can be found here.

A&A ePortal

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.

Art Image Collections on the Web

Images from Museum Collections

Many museums offer online access to their collections. Try these if you are looking for a particular work from a particular museum:

West Chester University   ---    WCU Libraries  25 West Rosedale Avenue, West Chester, PA 19383  610-430-4400