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Art & Design: Reference

A research guide for finding Art & Design reference materials, books, periodicals and articles, images, career resources, and web sites.

Using Reference Materials

Reference materials, including encyclopedias and dictionaries, can be used when you are starting your research to get background information.

They are great for giving you keywords that you can use when you start searching for articles on your topic in the library databases or on the web.

Check Credo Reference or Oxford Reference or all of our E-Reference Sources at Alkek Library


American Art DirectoryBi-annual directory of art schools, art organizations, and art information center.

Artspeak: a guide to contemporary ideas, movements, and buzzwords, 1945 to the present 

The Book of Art: A pictorial encyclopedia of painting, drawing, and sculpture 

From Abacus to Zeus: This is a dictionary of art related terms including processes, symbols, mythological Gods.
Index to Artistic Biography: This is a secondary source. It gives dates and country, then refers you to the title that contains the biographical information.
Masterworks - Credo's collection of art history videos. Each short documentary showcases an artist and a key piece, illuminating the context and history of the work.
World Painting Index: This is a secondary source which lists by artist of title of their major works and where you can find a reproduction of the work.

Subject Guide

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Tara Spies Smith