Looking to learn more about the arts or further your own research? Whether you’re an artist or just exploring, UW–Madison Libraries offers world-class opportunities to research art. Explore catalogs and digital archives with the expert guidance of UW–Librarians and unearth hidden treasures in collections of books, photos, and music. The libraries listed below will connect you with a vibrant community of artists, researchers, and enthusiasts that can ignite your creativity.
Elsewhere on campus, you may plunge into poetry in College Library’s Gaus Collection, explore Memorial Library’s materials on creative writing, dance, film studies, and theater, and buttress your arts business and arts administration awareness at the Business Library. There’s no limit to where you might find inspiration.
Located on the first floor of the Elvehjem Building, the Kohler Art Library offers a serene study space, a large collection of contemporary and historic art books and exhibition catalogs, over 100 art magazines and journals for browsing, and expert guidance on finding and using art resources. The Art Library also features a large collection of artists’ books and showcases rotating exhibits from the collection. Online art and design resources available exclusively through the Libraries include image databases, fashion and design trend forecasting, historical primary source material, and art encyclopedias and bibliographies.
Located in the basement of Memorial Library, Mills is the primary resource for music materials and information on campus and in the state. Mills has vinyl records, CDs, cassettes, DVDs, books, and scores in collections available for borrowing, as well as scholarly journals and general interest magazines, a Music Software Workstation, and archival materials in our various Special Collections, many of which we’ve made available freely online in UW Digital Collections.
Located on the ninth floor of Memorial Library, the Department of Special Collections has rare books, manuscripts, archives, ephemera, and a significant reference collection. Artists might be especially interested in holdings related to fashion and design, the science of color and dying, printmaking and print history, literary subcultures and countercultures, and the history of science and technology. Both the university community and the general public are welcome to view and do research with the collections. Visitors are also invited into the space for exhibits, tours, classes, lectures, and other events.
Located inside Steenbock Library and open to the public, the University Archives & Records Management (UA) gathers and preserves historical documents in almost all media–papers, photos, posters, audio-visual, and more–to help anyone interested in exploring the history of the arts and artists at UW-Madison. UA has a special focus on collecting and producing oral histories. They also work with campus groups to create and manage archives and records.
Photos: Alex André