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About Artists

An introduction to artist resources, collectives, museums, and more.

About This Guide

This guide highlights information sources on individual artists, with an emphasis on access to information on contemporary and lesser-known artists, who are not as yet well-represented in books and scholarly articles. 

For more resources on living artists, see the subject guide, Modern & Contemporary Art. See other art guides at All Subject Guides: Art & Architecture.

Types of Resources

In addition to the monograph, there are several special kinds of books on artists and their works, such as the exhibition catalog, the retrospective, and the catalogue.  Each type will include biographical information about the artist.

Monographs–books dedicated to a single artist.  Include the artist’s name and “biography” or “criticism” in your BULS search.

Diego Rivera AND biography

Exhibition Catalogs -- books that accompany museum and gallery exhibitions generally contain biographical and chronological artist information as well as images of works exhibited.  Include the artist’s name and the word “exhibition” or  “exhibitions” in your BULS search.  Several major museums, such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s MetPublications, have posted their exhibition catalogs online.  

Examples of exhibition catalog/ues --

Retrospectives --  a kind of exhibition that traces the artist's career from the first works to those created later in life. Include the word "retrospective" in your BULS search.

Examples of "retrospectives" --

Catalogue Raisonnes --- complete studies of artists' work including object images and provenance, usually published near the end of their careers. Include artist’s last name and the word “raisonne” or “raisonnes” in your BULS search.

Examples of catalogues raisonnes --