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Art & Design Library Resource Guide

Olson Library provides many resources for your use, including its own catalog of materials, as well as access to other electronic databases in which you can find journal articles, image collections and reference resources. You can have access to all of these resources anywhere you have an internet connection. If required to log-in just use your Webmail ID and password.

Olson Library Homepage: This is the page that you can use to navigate to any of the resources Olson Library provides for you, including e-books, full-text articles and on-line reference works.

A Note on Finding Articles vs. Books

Many students get confused by where to look for journal/magazine articles and books. In order to find magazine/journal articles, you can use OneSearch or you may use an article database. Individual articles are not listed in the Library Catalog; only the titles of magazines and journals are listed in the Library Catalog. If you need to find magazine or journal articles and don't know where to look come to the Library and we will help you figure out what to do.


How to use OneSearch (flash video)



Find specific sources for formal analysis:

Type of material=books

Library Catalog
Search the NMU Olson Library catalog by Author/Title/Subject or Keyword to find records for books, periodicals, government documents, and audiovisual materials in a variety of formats (including online) held by NMU, LSSU, Finlandia University, and GCC libraries. You can not use this to find articles in magazines or journals, only which magazines and journals the library owns. Use one of the databases under "journal articles" for locating articles.

If our library doesn't have the books you need, you should then search MelCat (the Michigan Electronic Library Catalog). You can request items from over 250 libraries in the state of Michigan. You will usually receive items requested through MelCat in about a week. Hint: this can not be used for journal articles at this time.

eBooks (EBSCO eBook Collection)
A collection of more than 19,500 digital versions of books. In addition to being able to navigate through the contents of a book page by page, you have the ability to navigate using the Table of Contents, the Index, or to search the full text of the eBook. You can view the book for 15 minutes (no account needed) or checkout the book for 6 hours (requires creating a free account).

ACLS Humanities E-book
A collection of high-quality full-text books in all areas of the humanities, including art history. These scholarly works are of major importance to historical studies which are frequently cited in the literature. Includes in-print, out-of-print, and rare titles. Included are over 1,200 books with 250 titles added annually covering the period of 1900 to present.

Type of material=journal articles

To find journal articles for your art and art history courses there is one article database that is particularly helpful. It is: JSTOR.

JSTOR: Complete, searchable, full text articles from over 1,000 core scholarly journals. 1878 to the most recent 1-5 years (varies by title). Included in OneSearch.

Type of material=image databases

ArtStor: ArtStor is an incredible image database which covers many time periods and cultures, and documents the fields of architecture, painting, sculpture, photography, decorative arts, design, anthropology, ethnographic and women's studies, as well as many other forms of visual culture. Users can search, view, download and organize images. Make your life easier and use ArtStor to find images for your art and art history papers. Not included yet in OneSearch but it is in the process of being added.

CAMIO, the Catalog of Art Museum Images Online is a collection of images from leading art museums , and many of the works are accompanied by sound, video and curatorial notes. All content is rights-cleared for educational use, lectures, presentations, class projects, and research. All visual media are represented, with a particular strength in contemporary art. It includes images of visual art in all media. High-resolution images are included for each work of art. There are 95,000 works of art (and growing) covering the period of 3000 BC - the present. Not included in OneSearch.

New York Public Library's Digital Collection Per the Library's website, this digital image collection contains over 700,000 digitized images of objects ranging from photography, maps, illuminated manuscripts, ephemera and prints, to name just a few. Not included in OneSearch.

Type of material=On-Line Reference Resources

Reference works (dictionaries, encyclopedias, timelines, "companions") are a particularly good resource when you're studying art and art history. These types of resources provide information about the historical, cultural and religious context of an art work that you're studying or doing research on. Electronic Reference Sources Go to this site and pick the subject for Art and Design. These sources are specifically geared towards art and design topics.

History Reference Resources: This is a list of on-line reference resources that are available to you in the area of history. These types of resources can give you a lot of good background information.

Art Cyclopedia
A comprehensive index of artists represented at hundreds of museum sites, image archives, and other online resources. Update January/2006: have now indexed over 2,300 art sites , and offer over 95,000 links to an estimated 180,000 artworks by 8,200 renowned artists .

Type of material=Internet Resources

Evaluating internet resources.
Before you search for internet resources be sure you understand what to look for in a credible source. We have put this tip sheet together to assist you.

Type of material=photographic sources and portals

Museum of Modern Art Photography Department gives examples of early photography. These can be browsed or searched via the MOMA Web site.

Art History Resources on the Web: Photography is maintained by Prof. Witcombe of Sweet Briar College and includes links to information on photo collections, artists, organizations, and photographic processes.

iPL2. Search using the term "history photography" to find links to over 100 sites.

Type of material=jewelry sources and portals

The Ganoksin Project is an electronic resource for professional and amateur jewelry artists. It includes articles on materials, tools, techniques, and safety issues.


Style Guides:

Style Guides define how you do the citations and works cited for your paper. Some instructors may also have you use the formatting guidelines (margins, line spacing, etc.) that are given in the Style Guide, as well. TO SAVE YOURSELF TIME AND AGGRAVATION, ALWAYS FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS IN THE STYLE GUIDE CHOSEN BY YOUR PROFESSOR. Two are commonly chosen for art and art history papers: The MLA Style Guide or the Chicago Style Guide.

Quick Reference MLA Style Guide. This on-line guide is a good place to go to get general information on how to do a citation, but you should get into the habit of consulting the actual book. Copies are available at the Olson Library (call no. LB2369.G53 2009). If you need help with formatting, works cited or in-text citations, you can always contact the library for help.

Quick Reference Chicago Style Guide This on-line guide includes some of the more common examples for citing references as end notes or in bibliographies. Chicago style dictates that all references are indented and single-spaced . The examples are based on guidelines listed in the The Chicago Manual of Style (15th edition, 2003) . This source is located in the Library's reference collection under the following call number: Ref Z 253 .U69 2003. You can always contact the library for help.

If you use the Firefox browser to find items on the internet, you can use Firefox's application Zotero to quickly format your citation information in the style you (or your professor) prefers. Olson Library has a guide that quickly describes Zotero for you.

Borrowing Materials From Other Libraries

MelCat allows you to obtain materials not owned by Olson Library but that are owned by participating Michigan libraries..  Materials such as books, CDs, DVDs, music, etc. can be borrowed from other libraries.  The average time to receive requested materials is shorter than with traditional Interlibrary Loan and you can check the status of your request online. You will be notified by email when your items arrive and are available for use. (Note: MelCat can't be used for journal articles at this time, please request these through Interlibrary Loan) .

Interlibrary Loan allows you to obtain materials not owned by Olson Library.  Materials such as books and periodical articles, among other sources, can be borrowed from other libraries.  The average time to receive requested materials is 1-2 weeks and you will be notified by email when your items arrive.  Consult the above link to submit a request and for further details.


Need Further Assistance?

Stop by the Public Services Desk for further assistance with any of these sources. 
You can also contact the Desk through live chat or by phone at 227-2294.
You may also contact Krista E. Clumpner for assistance.



Library Hours
Mon: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Tue: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Wed: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Thu: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Fri: 7:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Sat: 12:00 noon - 8:00 p.m.
For exceptions and full year hours