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Art Resources

Guide to art resources at UH


Most of UH’s art information resources are housed in the William R. Jenkins Architecture and Art Library, which is located next door to the School of Art on the first floor of the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture and Design.  Some materials, especially those that focus on history, cultural studies and biography, may also be found at the M.D. Anderson Library. 

Art is still primarily a print-based field of study, so students are encouraged to browse the considerable book and journal collections in the Jenkins Library, as relatively few are available electronically.  The Jenkins Library staff are experts in art research and enjoy assisting students, so stop by for materials, consultation and study space.  

For research assistance or specific questions, email for assistance.

Research Basics

WHAT IS A LIBRARY CATALOG?  It is a database where researchers can locate material that UH Libraries owns or to which it subscribes.  It contains the titles and subjects of books and e-books, dvd's and streaming videos, journals and e-journals, databases and other online research tools.  It cannot be used to search for articles; just for the journals and magazines containing those articles.  

Use the library catalog to search for materials that are broad and deep.

WHAT IS A DATABASE?  A database is a searchable collection of data.  The databases on this guide are packaged by publishers and other vendors and available to UH researchers because the library subscribes to them.  UH researchers need to use the library's websites or catalog to access them, as they are not freely available on the Internet.  Some of the databases found on this guide are focused on a particular subject, such as Christian art or materials.

Use databases to search for materials that are focused and specific.

WHAT ARE PRIMARY MATERIALS?  Primary materials are documents or information-bearing objects that were created at a time period being studied.  Letters, photographs, autobiographies, diaries, and sound or video recordings are all examples of primary materials. Researchers analyze primary sources to create books, papers or other works of scholarship (which, in turn, become SECONDARY sources).

WHAT FORMATS ARE USED IN ART HISTORY RESEARCH?  Books, journals, videos, art examples, indexes, art-specific dictionaries and encyclopedias, iconographic guides, collection guides, directories, biographies, and photographs are typical materials used when studying and researching art.

Citing and Writing

Refine your research skills by learning about Citation Styles as well as get writing assistance by the University Writing Center.