This guide will help you find resources for research in Art and Architecture. It aims to point you to the most useful starting points for your research.
If you have any questions about doing basic or in-depth research relating to Art and Architecture, please contact Brooke Henderson, Art Librarian, at 781.283.3258 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
This guide is a work in progress; I welcome your suggestions to improve it!
- Consult bibliographies or footnotes at the end of books and articles
- Email citations to yourself to save time and to stay organized.
- Remember to note the location of any books you find in the catalog. Your research may be interdisciplinary and you may find useful books both in Clapp Library and in the Art Library.
- using truncation symbols (i.e. asterisk*) will work in most databases
- Newspapers (i.e. New York Times) are great places to find information on exhibitions and artist biographical info.
- Explore our rich collections of Primary Sources, including Special Collections, Archives, and our Digital Collections.
- Ulrich’s Periodicals Directory (either search as ‘title’ in the catalog or you can find this on the Databases A-Z page) is a great place to check where specific journals are indexed. For example, if you know that there is a terrific article in Renaissance Quarterly, but you have no idea what is the issue or date, you can look up Renaissance Quarterly in Ulrich’s; then click on the “Abstracting/Indexing & Article Access” tab to see where the journal is indexed. Then search for the article in any of those indexes to which we subscribe (ie. BHA, Historical Abstracts, Academic Search Complete, etc).
- Try searching via Google Scholar (rather than Google).
Critically evaluate what you find
Criteria to keep in mind when choosing and using sources:
• Accuracy - What is the purpose of the document and why was it produced? Does the author cite her/his sources and are they legitimate?
• Authority - Who wrote the source? Is the author credible? What are the author's credentials (educational background, past writing, experience) in this area? Have you seen the author's name cited in other sources or bibliographies? Respected authors are cited frequently by other scholars. For this reason, always note names that appear in many different sources. Who published the source? Check the domain of the document - what institution publishes this document?
• Objectivity - Does the author have a bias, political or commercial or persuasive?
• Currency - Is this information new or based on outdated sources? Can you tell how current it is? How up-to-date are the links (if any)?