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A-Z Databases

Find the best library databases for your research.

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The following databases are newly acquired or being evaluated for a future subscription.
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This database aims to provide information on all artists of the African Diaspora and Africa who have lived, worked, studied, or exhibited in the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean. Entries include biographical information, bibliographies, records of exhibitions, public collection holdings, high quality images of artwork, and artist contact information when available. Artists are eligible for inclusion in the database when they have been actively and professionally engaged in the production of works of art for a period of at least four years and are at least twenty-one years of age.

Access provided via Archive-it.
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Assembled by l'Institut national d'histoire de l'art (INHA), Agorha provides free access to numerous heritage and research databases of value to art history and archaeology researchers internationally. These include the catalogues of the Institute’s Library and its Jacques Doucet collection, the entire run of the Répertoire d’art et d’archéologie (1910-1972), and the Bibliographie critique de la sculpture en France à l'époque moderne. It hosts a number of research databases that are a product of the research and teaching activities of the Galerie Colbert, which works in partnership with specialist education bodies throughout France.
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The AMICA Library (Art Museum Image from Cartography Associates) is a collection of digital images of works of art in major museums from around the world. The images represent a broad range of works which highlight the creative output of cultures around the world, from prehistoric to contemporary times, and covering the complete range of expressive forms. Each image has an accompanying catalog record in the database.
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ArchiveGrid is an index of historical documents, personal papers, and family histories held in archives around the world. Thousands of libraries, museums, and archives have contributed collection descriptions to ArchiveGrid. Researchers searching ArchiveGrid can learn about the many items in each of these collections, contact archives to arrange a visit to examine materials, and order copies.
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Art Resource is a fine art stock image archive. Artworks are in various mediums and range from prehistoric times to the present. Art Resource functions as a rights and permissions representative for many major museums and archives, especially in Europe and the United States. Works are cross-referenced by subject, title, artist, period, place, and medium.
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Art21 is a nonprofit organization that seeks to connect audiences with the works and words of contemporary artists through television programming, digital films, educational resources, professional development programs, public programming, and an online publication. Their website provides access to extensive digital video and articles.
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This expanded, online version of The Artforum Index (initially published as Artforum, 1962-1968: a cumulative index to the first six volumes) covers the first issue in 1962 to Volume II, Issue 4, in 1968.

The High Performance Index covers Issues 1 through 40 and 58/9 through 70.
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Atlas provides online access to images of works of art exhibited in the Louvre, together with the basic information displayed on labels accompanying works in the museum and authoritative commentary and analysis by the curators and staff. Visitors can carry out simple or advanced searches by keyword, artist, title, inventory number, medium, technique, department or room. Recent acquisitions are also highlighted. Atlas allows visitors to create a personalized album. When printed, the selected works are grouped by location (wing and floor number) within the museum.
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AWOL is a project of Charles E. Jones, Tombros Librarian for Classics and Humanities at the Pattee Library, Penn State University. The blog highlights open access material relating to the ancient world, from the beginnings of human habitation to the late antique/early Islamic period.

Access The AWOL Index via the link in the right sidebar. The index programmatically extracts bibliographic data from AWOL and presents it in a structured data format.
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The Biodiversity Heritage Library (BHL) is the world’s largest open access digital library for biodiversity literature and archives. BHL is revolutionizing global research by providing free, worldwide access to knowledge about life on Earth.

Headquartered at the Smithsonian Libraries and Archives in Washington, D.C., BHL operates as a worldwide consortium of natural history, botanical, research, and national libraries working together to address this challenge by digitizing the natural history literature held in their collections and making it freely available for open access as part of a global “biodiversity community.”

The BHL portal provides free access to hundreds of thousands of volumes, comprising over 60 million pages, from the 15th-21st centuries. The historical literature and original materials in BHL’s collection may contain content that is outdated and harmful. As we continue to understand our role and responsibility as a digital library to address issues of equity and inclusion, we have provided an Acknowledgment of Harmful Content on our websites.
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This resource contains biographical and bibliographical data on architects that were born or worked in the UK and Ireland from 1800 to 1950. Each entry includes a list of works, a bibliography, and links to additional content. Users can search by name, firm, gender, and countries of work. The database, made available by Design Research Publications, also includes extensive annotated lists of the print and online sources used to compile it.
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This webpage provides access to a searchable database of objects held in the British Museum's collection.
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The Classical Art Research Centre is a research unit of the Oxford University Faculty of Classics created out of the Beazley Archive in 2007. The Centre’s website provides access to an array of resources borne out of their research, at the core of which is a large photographic archive devoted to ancient Greek figure-decorated pottery and the Beazley Archive Pottery Database.

The site also includes resources related to several other projects of the Centre. The Gandhara Connections project, which includes the Gandharan Art Bibliography, is an initiative to pool knowledge and stimulate insights into Buddhist Gandharan art of the region that is now northern Pakistan and its links to the classical world of Greece and Rome. The Corpus Vasorum Antiquorum Online (‘Corpus of Ancient Vases’) provides digital access to a series of catalogues dating back to 1922 of mostly ancient Greek painted pottery. The website also includes a database of ancient and neoclassical engraved gems.
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CAMEO is an encyclopedia of technical information on the terms, materials, and techniques used in the fields of art conservation and historic preservation. A core component of this resource is the Materials Database developed by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, which provides chemical, physical, visual, and analytical information on historic and contemporary materials used in the conservation and production of artistic, architectural, archaeological, and anthropological materials. The database contains images of the materials’ outward appearance, analytical image records of microscopic and spectroscopic characteristics, Material Safety Data Sheets, and links to commercial records

Through the cooperation of multiple institutions, CAMEO has grown to include several additional reference collections, including the Fiber Reference Image Library, the Asian Textile Database, the Forbes Pigment Database, the Materials Working Group (under the American Institute for Conservation), the Uemura Dye Archive, and the Dye Analysis database.
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Corpus is the Louvre Museum’s digital portal of documentary and scientific resources that shed light on the history of the Museum’s collections. The portal contains photographic and archival collections from the Museum’s conservation and scientific departments. Key component databases on the Corpus portal include:

* Demotte – Fonds Photographiques – The photographic collection of antique dealers Georges-Joseph and Lucien Demotte.
* Galeries Demotte – A reconstruction of the full Demotte antique sales catalog, whether there is an existing image or not.
* Inventaire Mariette – The archaeological inventory of Mariette from her excavations at the Serapeum of Memphis.
* Base Clémence Neyret —A catalog of Coptic ceramics in the Louvre Museum.
* The digital collections of the Louvre Museum and the Musée National Eugène-Delacroix.
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The Deutsche Digitale Bibliotek collocates digital access to books, newspapers, images, sculptures, music, and other archival material from German libraries, museums, archives, and other culture and knowledge institutions. The platform, a joint project of the federal, state, and local governments, aims to provide universal access to Germany's cultural heritage.
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The Directory of Open Access Journals provides free access to the full text of scholarly and scientific journals in all subjects and languages.
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This site contains teaching and learning resources for teachers, students, and parents in the subject areas of literature and language arts, foreign languages, art and culture, and history and social studies. EDSITEment is a partnership between the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Trust for the Humanities.
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ERIC (Educational Resources Information Center) is a database produced by the U.S. Dept. of Education. It provides access to bibliographic records for journal articles and other education-related materials, with links to full-text content where available.
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This resource indexes modern artworks confiscated by the Nazis as "Degenerate Art." The database is a product of The Research Center for "Degenerate Art," established in 2003 at the Art History Department of Freie Universität Berlin.
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The Farber Gravestone Collection is a database of images of gravestone sculpture, most of which date prior to 1800. The data accompanying the photographs include the name and death date of the deceased, the location of the stone, and information concerning the stone material, the iconography, the inscription, and (when known) the carver.
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The Fashion and Race and Database provides a roadmap for lasting change in the fashion system, as it offers lessons and resources that diversify how we understand fashion. The database is an invaluable platform for those who agree that it’s time to challenge dominant narratives and harmful practices in fashion. This educational and supportive platform applies pressure to outdated and oppressive ways of thinking, and uplifts the stories and histories that need to be told. This takes a global effort that involves racialized participants as well as our non-racialized allies.
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Gallica is the digital library platform of the Bibliotheque nationale de France (BnF). It contains newspapers, books, manuscripts, maps, costumes, recordings, photographs, videos, and more. Documents are culled from the BnF and its more than three hundred partners. Materials are selected to illustrate French heritage and influence and cover various topics including history, literature, science, philosophy, law, economics, and politics.
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The Getty Research Institute provides access to this collection of interviews with artists, architects, curators, critics, dealers, and collectors in the form of transcripts and videos, with a particular focus on the postwar Los Angeles art scene of 1945 to 1980. Please note that the audio interviews listed on the site are are not publicly available.

The collection includes transcripts of interviews with Peter Bradley, David Driskell, Charles Gaines, Richard Mayhew, and Howardena Pindell, and video conversations with Kenneth Anger, Curtis Harrington, Larry Jordan, Larry Bell, Karl Benjamin, Billy Al Bengston, Richard Bradshaw, Charles Brittin, Judy Chicago, Vija Celmins, Melvin Edwards, Ronald David, Ronald Frank, Frank Gehry, George Herms, Henry Hopkins, James Byrnes, Fred Hammersley, Craig Kauffman, David Martin, Victor Newlove, Hans Neuendorf, Betye Saar, Larry Bell, Joe Goode, Jerry McMillan, Ron Miyashiro, Irving Blum, Everett Ellin, Patricia Faure, Jack Brogan, Mary Corse, Montel Factor, Maren Hassinger, Ulysses Jenkins, Barbara McCollough, Robert Irwin, Ed Moses, Ed Ruscha, Jerry McMillian, and Mason Williams.
A searchable archive of the US (1867 to present) and UK (1930-2015) editions of Harper's Bazaar. The issues are reproduced as high-resolution color page images and supported by fully searchable text and article-level indexing. This resource chronicles over 150 years of American, British, and international fashion, culture, and society, supporting researchers by offering unique insights into the events, attitudes, and interests of the modern era.
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The Metropolitan Museum of Art's Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History is a chronological, geographical, and thematic exploration of the history of art from around the world, as illustrated by the collections of The Met. First launched in 2000, the Timeline now extends from prehistory to the present day. The Timeline continues to expand in scope and depth, and reflects the most up-to-date scholarship.

Multiple access points allow users to browse and engage the history of art from many perspectives. Users can compare art across cultures and geographic areas for a given time span or pursue the development of art within a single place or culture over an extended time period.
Independent Voices is an open access collection of digitized alternative press newspapers, magazines, and journals published in the United States in the latter half of the twentieth century, mostly in the 1960s and 1970s. These periodicals were produced by feminists, dissident GIs, campus radicals, Native Americans, anti-war activists, Black Power advocates, Hispanics, LGBT activists, and the extreme right-wing press. The collection also includes alternative literary magazines, known as “little magazines,” which published experimental and avant-garde works.

The publications in this collection were sourced from libraries, archives, historical societies, and community groups throughout the United States.
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IRDB, launched by the Japanese Institute of Informatics, allows users to search across Japanese research institutes such as universities for academic information (including journal articles, theses, dissertations, departmental bulletins and research papers).
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JAANUS is an online dictionary of Japanese architecture and art history terminology. The dictionary contains terms related to traditional Japanese architecture and gardens, painting, sculpture and art-historical iconography from approximately the first century AD to the end of the Edo Period (1868). JAANUS is searchable in English and romanized Japanese, and includes hyperlinked cross-references. Some entries are illustrated.
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The Japanese Historical Map Collection contains early maps of Japan and the World. The collection was acquired by the University of California from the Mitsui family in 1949, and is housed on the Berkeley campus in the East Asian Library. Represented in this online collection are about 100 maps and books from this Collection. The maps were selected by Yuki Ishimatsu, former Head of Japanese Collections at the East Asian Library, and scanned and put online by David Rumsey and Cartography Associates.
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The Latin American and Caribbean Contemporary Art Web Archive is a collection developed by the Ivy Plus Libraries Confederation's Art & Architecture Librarians, and is an extension of an existing effort focused on collecting publications in all formats that document contemporary art and artists of Latin America and the Caribbean. The agreement defines contemporary art as it refers to 'developments in the visual arts from 1975 to the present,' with material sought 'for the entire career of artists who have been active at any time since 1975.' This archive aims to preserve for researchers the personal and official websites belonging to notable contemporary Latin American and Caribbean artists, artists’ collectives, artists’ groups, galleries, museums, and related entities in order to assure the continuing availability of the important content they contain.
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LUNA Commons showcases public digital collections from a wide variety of sources on the LUNA digital asset management web-based software platform. The Commons provides access to a large volume of digital image collections from museums, universities, and private collections throughout the world. This platform hosts collections that were previously found on Cartography Associate's Visual Collections: Images of Art, History and Culture platform.
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The Michigan Asian Studies Open Access Books Collection, launched by the University of Michigan Press, is a collection of significant out-of-print books about Asia made freely and publicly available online. The collection is part of the Humanities Open Book Program, which is jointly sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Titles in the humanities, social sciences, and political sciences explore the society, culture, and history of East, South, and Southeast Asia.
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This resource is a digital repository of items owned by state-run Indian museums. Artifacts include sculptures, paintings, manuscripts, weapons, and coins.

Participating museums include:

* National Museum, New Delhi, India
* Allahabad Museum, Allahabad, India
* Indian Museum, Kolkata, India
* National Gallery of Modern Arts (NGMA), New Delhi, India
* National Gallery of Modern Arts (NGMA), Mumbai, India
* National Gallery of Modern Arts (NGMA), Bengaluru, India
* Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) Museum, Goa, India
* Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) Museum, Nagarjunakonda, India
* Salar Jung Museum, Hyderabad, India
* Victoria Memorial Hall, Kolkata, India
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This resource indexes the artists represented in the physical files of the Native American Artists Resource Collection at the Heard Museum's Billie Jane Baguley Library and Archives. The Native American Artists Resource Collection brings together artist files for traditional and contemporary Native American artists, performers, and writers. The online reference to the collection provides basic biographical information including name, alternative name(s), gender, heritage, and specialties or mediums for which the artist is known. In some cases, additional information such as life dates, place of birth, exhibitions, awards, and citations are provided. Portraits, curriculum vitae, artist statements, and other digital resources are occasionally available with the cooperation of the artist.
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The Nazi-Era Provenance Internet Portal is a searchable registry of art objects in U.S. museum collections that changed hands in Continental Europe during the Nazi era (1933-1945).
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NYPL digital collections provides access to over 900,000 images digitized from primary sources and printed rarities in the collections of the New York Public Library, including illuminated manuscripts, historical maps, vintage posters, rare prints and photographs, illustrated books, printed ephemera, and more.
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EBSCO's American Doctoral Dissertations is a database of citations for theses and dissertations. Citations for works published from 1902 to the present include a link to access the full text, when available, via the institutional repository where the thesis or dissertation is housed.
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This database supports the study of Old and Middle English manuscripts from the Parker Library at Corpus Christi College in Cambridge. Subjects and materials represented include music, medieval travelogues, maps, bestiaries, royal ceremonies, historical chronicles, and Bibles. This resource is of particular use to scholars in art history, music, science, literature, politics and religion. Hosted by Stanford Libraries.
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Persée is an open access portal to digitizations of French-language scholarly documents, primarily journals in the humanities and social sciences. Documents date back to 1840. The resource is a joint public initiative of the University of Lyon, the CNRS (Centre national de la recherche scientifique), and the ENS (École normale supérieure) de Lyon with the support of the French Ministries of National Education and of Higher Education, Research, and Innovation. Persée is a partner of and provides access to content from Érudit, OpenEdition Journals, and cairn.info.
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Based at Tufts University, the Perseus Digital Library is a humanities database with core collections in the history, literature, and culture of the Greco-Roman world. Other collection areas include Arabic, Germanic, nineteenth-century American, and Renaissance materials. Content includes primary source texts in English, Greek, and Latin, dictionaries for Greek and Latin translation, and images of artifacts and archaeological sites.
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Pleiades is a community-built gazetteer and graph of ancient places which is intended for use both by individual users and by emerging computational research and visualization tools that support humanities teaching and research. At present, Pleiades has extensive coverage for the Greek and Roman world, and is expanding into Ancient Near Eastern, Byzantine, Celtic, and Early Medieval geography. Data may be downloaded in multiple formats–JSON, CSV, KML, and RDF. Pleiades is a joint project of the Ancient World Mapping Center, the Stoa Consortium, and the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
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Searchable online platform for art historical object research. Database includes the contents of the printed volumes of the Reallexikon zur Deutschen Kunstgeschichte. In addition to those already published, new articles from the fields of architecture, fine arts, handicrafts and iconography, as well as materials and techniques, will be included.
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The Critical Writing program commissions emerging writers to pursue the underlying themes and ideas that inform individual Recess Session projects, initiating meaningful exchanges between artists and writers and facilitating the mutual production of new work. Essays date from 2012 - present.
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The Netherlands Institute for Art History (Rijksbureau voor Kunsthistorische Documentatie) provides and continues to update several databases. RKDartists contains biographical data about namely Dutch artists. RKDimages is a database containing descriptions and images of primarily Dutch and Flemish works of art from the fourteenth up to and including the nineteenth century.
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The Pulverer Collection, acquired in its entirety by the Freer Gallery of Art in 2007, includes numerous rare and pristine examples of Japanese illustrated books produced in the Edo period and beyond. For more than thirty years Dr. Gerhard Pulverer, a renowned medical researcher in Germany, and his wife Rosemarie traveled the world and assembled the collection. Their holdings of more than 900 titles encompass almost 2,200 volumes that range in date from the early seventeenth century to the 1970s. Today the Pulverer Collection is regarded as one of the most outstanding and comprehensive collections of Japanese illustrated books outside Japan.
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This resource brings together digitized materials pertinent to African American history from over a thousand libraries and archives across the country. Umbra Search is developed by the Givens Collection of African American Literature at the University of Minnesota Libraries’ Archives and Special Collections, in collaboration with Penumbra Theatre Company. The Digital Public Library of America provides over half of the site’s content.
A searchable archive of American Vogue, from the first issue in 1892 to the current month, reproduced in high-resolution color page images. Pages, advertisements, covers and fold-outs have been included, with rich indexing enabling researchers to find images by garment type, designer and brand names. The Vogue Archive preserves the work of the world's greatest fashion designers, stylists and photographers and is a unique record of American and international fashion, culture and society from the dawn of the modern era to the present day.
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WebLIMC is a database of images and metadata pertaining to objects referenced in the LIMC, an encyclopedia published serially from 1981 to 2009 which catalogs representations of mythology in the plastic arts of classical antiquity, and in the Thesaurus Cultus et Rituum Antiquorum, a reference on Greek, Etruscan, and Roman cults and rituals from 1000 BC to 400 AD.
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The Wellcome Collection, a UK museum and library of health and human experience, maintains a large collection of digital images illustrating the history of medicine from ancient times to the present day. To find images, click the tab labelled "Images" above the search bar.
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This site provides access to the digitized collections of the Winterthur Museum of Decorative Arts, which include seventeenth to twentieth century trade catalogs, pattern books, diaries, and other decorative arts-related archival collections.
An archive of Women's Wear Daily, from its launch in 1910 to recent issues,* reproduced in high-resolution images. Pages, articles, advertisements, and covers have been included, with searchable text and indexing. The Women's Wear Daily Archive preserves one of the fashion industry's most influential reads. Key moments in the history of the industry, as well as major designers, brands, retailers and advertisers are all covered in this publication of record. * 6-month embargo on new issues.
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