Art Museum Libraries and Librarianship

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Overview

Although most art museums possess a library of some kind, these facilities are often hidden from the public and seldom discussed in library schools despite the important role they play as substantial research venues. Co-published with the Art Libraries Society of North America, Art Museum Libraries and Librarianship serves as an introduction to the field of art museum librarianship and its diverse settings. Editor Joan Benedetti has compiled contributions from practicing art museum librarians to present sixteen chapters that address the topics of leadership, reader services, automation, security, cataloging, space planning, collection development, visual resources, ephemera, special collections, archives, fundraising, public relations, volunteers and interns, professional development, and solo librarianship. Each chapter consists of several essays that deal with the distinct environment of art museum libraries: from the largest research collections that serve many curatorial departments and multiple administrative layers to the smallest solo librarian venues whose unsung staff work in relative isolation. The book concludes with a collection of brief institutional profiles, which include statistical and descriptive information on fifteen diverse art museum libraries in the U.S., Canada, and Europe; appendixes that describe academic programs offering dual degrees in librarianship and art, list international professional associations for art museum librarians, and provide sample policies and procedures in use today in art museum libraries; a bibliography; and an index. Art Museum Libraries and Librarianship, the first publication of its kind, is illustrated with over 90 black and white images of art museums, their libraries, and items from their collections.

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Editorial Reviews

College & Research Libraries News
...this volume is a treasure house of information....
March 2008 American Reference Books Annual
This reference book is an excellent choice...
Art Libraries Journal - Beth Houghton
An excellent history and overview of the art museum scene. ...a major achievement. ...It will effectively inform those outside the sector of the riches and value of art museum libraries and provide valuable professional reinforcement for those within it.
Renata Guttman
...content-wise it's beyond impressive. I am thinking back to when I was in library school, digging around for any and all art/architecture library information I could find, and I know this will be a fantastic resource for all those future art and architecture librarians!
Sherman Clarke
I am delighted to hear that [the] book is out. We'll ALL want one!! Or two! One for home and [one for the] office. I'd think even those of us [catalogers] in academic or independent research libraries would want to have one. Some things cross type-of-library lines pretty readily; certainly cataloging does.
Reference and Research Book News
This attractive volume contains a wealth of thought-provoking material on the many sides and changing circumstances of art museum libraries. The 16 sections define topics such as reader services, access and security, institutional archives, working with volunteers, and solo librarianship, with numerous individual articles on each topic, often based on the author's personal experience. A separate section contains a survey of 15 art museum libraries, each with a small photo, a description, and statistics on such facts as the number of workers, the number of visitors, who the librarian reports to, special collections, the collections management system, and cataloging utilities, creating a handy resource for current trends for this specialized library type. Appendices provide lists of professional associations and sample documents. Benedetti served as a librarian at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art Research Library and the Craft and Folk Art Museum Library, Los Angeles.
Museum News
...addresses the myriad challenges and accomplishments of museum libraries in the United States, Canada, and Europe and reveals how they help fulfill the missions of their institutions.
Kathy Wellington
I am a library student hoping to work in museum and/or art libraries. I have found your book, Art Museum Libraries and Librarianship very helpful as a resource in several of my classes. In fact, we call it the art museum library "Bible" in our special libraries class. I highly recommend it for other students.
The Library Quarterly
Art Museum Libraries and Librarianship provides well-thought-out case studies of how some of the leading museum libraries in this country have reached solutions. A wide range of institutions are represented, both public and private. Art Museum Libraries and Librarianship almost becomes a how-to primer for anyone setting up or organizing a special collections library connected with a museum. The information provided by these essays about art museum libraries is broad enough to transcend any one type of museum library, and the philosophy presented in the essays can be applied in any number of similar situations.

Art Museum Libraries and Librarianship is both a practical guide for organizing a research library as an adjunct to any museum and a study of how special collections work in large and small museums. A handy reference guide, it should be required reading for anyone setting up or reorganizing a special collections library or a research library who strives to have that library well organized and optimally accessible to its researchers. Do not allow the title to mislead you: while all the libraries included are connected with art museums, the discussions and solutions are applicable to any type of museum and its associated research library.

If you have any association with a special collections library, this book should be on your shelves.

Reference and User Services Quarterly - Spring 2008
All entries have been written by librarians with vast experience in art museum libraries, and together they present a full picture of current practice and theory....This book will be useful to art librarians, whether in art museums or other art libraries. It will also serve as a wonderful picture of this world for any aspiring art museum librarians and would be a helpful addition to reading lists for any art librarianship courses currently offered by library schools.
Art Libraries Journal
An excellent history and overview of the art museum scene. ...a major achievement. ...It will effectively inform those outside the sector of the riches and value of art museum libraries and provide valuable professional reinforcement for those within it.
— Beth Houghton, Former Head of Tate Library & Archive, London
Reference and User Services Quarterly
All entries have been written by librarians with vast experience in art museum libraries, and together they present a full picture of current practice and theory....This book will be useful to art librarians, whether in art museums or other art libraries. It will also serve as a wonderful picture of this world for any aspiring art museum librarians and would be a helpful addition to reading lists for any art librarianship courses currently offered by library schools.
— Spring 2008, Vol 47, issue 3
Australian Library Journal
The author has extensive experience in art museum libraries....This volume is a comprehensive guide that covers every conceivable aspect of art museum librarianship. It is highly recommended, and while the main audience of the volume is limited as it is aimed directly at art librarians, the book includes a wealth of interesting facts and information useful to other specialist libraries, general libraries and students interested in a career in art museum libraries or managing unusual collections.
— Kay Neville
Library Quarterly
Art Museum Libraries and Librarianship provides well-thought-out case studies of how some of the leading museum libraries in this country have reached solutions. A wide range of institutions are represented, both public and private. Art Museum Libraries and Librarianship almost becomes a how-to primer for anyone setting up or organizing a special collections library connected with a museum. The information provided by these essays about art museum libraries is broad enough to transcend any one type of museum library, and the philosophy presented in the essays can be applied in any number of similar situations.

Art Museum Libraries and Librarianship is both a practical guide for organizing a research library as an adjunct to any museum and a study of how special collections work in large and small museums. A handy reference guide, it should be required reading for anyone setting up or reorganizing a special collections library or a research library who strives to have that library well organized and optimally accessible to its researchers. Do not allow the title to mislead you: while all the libraries included are connected with art museums, the discussions and solutions are applicable to any type of museum and its associated research library.

If you have any association with a special collections library, this book should be on your shelves.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780810859210
  • Publisher: The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group Inc
  • Publication date: 4/2/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 334
  • Product dimensions: 8.25 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Joan M. Benedetti was a Librarian-Cataloger at the L.A. County Museum of Art Research Library until she retired in 2002. Before that, she was the Museum Librarian (a solo position) at the Craft and Folk Art Museum (CAFAM) for 21 years, also serving as Director of CAFAM's Center for the Study of Art and Culture, 1989-1994. She has been an active member of the Art Libraries Society of North America. Michael Brand has been director of the J. Paul Getty Museum since December 2005, after having served as director of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond since 2000. Ann B. Abid was the head librarian at the Cleveland Museum of Art from 1985 until her retirement in 2004. Before that she worked for 22 years at the St. Louis Art Museum. She has been an active member of ARLIS/NA, serving as president in 1988.

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Table of Contents

Part 1 Foreword Part 2 Preface and Acknowledgments Part 3 Introduction Part 4 Part I: The Many Facets of Art Museum Librarianship Chapter 5 1 Outside In: Leading and Managing the Art Museum Library Chapter 6 2 Reader Services, Reference, and the Art Musuem Library's Clientele Chapter 7 3 Automating the Art Museum Library in the Twenty-First Century Chapter 8 4 A Delicate Balance: Access and Security in the Art Museum Library Chapter 9 5 Cataloging and Technical Services in the Art Museum Library Chapter 10 6 Space Planning in the Art Museum Library Part 11 Part II: Building Collections: The Intellectual Content of the Art Museum Library Chapter 12 7 Collection Development and the Acquisition Process: The Art Museum Librarian as Curator Chapter 13 8 Curating Images: Visual Resources in the Art Museum Library Chapter 14 9 The Invisible Made Visible: Collecting Ephemera in the Art Museum Library Chapter 15 10 Special Collections in the Art Museum Library Chapter 16 11 Institutional Archives: The Art Museum Library's Memory Part 17 Part III: Promoting, Sustaining, and Developing Support for the Art Museum Library Chapter 18 12 Fundamentals of Fund-Raising for the Art Museum Library Chapter 19 13 Marketing, Public Relations, and Advocacy in the Art Museum Library Chapter 20 14 Working with Volunteers and Interns in the Art Museum Library Chapter 21 15 Professional Development: Investing in Art Museum Librarianship Chapter 22 16 Solo Librarianship in the Art Museum Library Part 23 Part IV: Thumbnail Sketches: Profiles of Fifteen Art Museum Libraries Part 24 Appendixes Part 25 Bibliography Part 26 Index Part 27 About the Contributors

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