ABOUT THE LIBRARY
The Clark houses one of the most distinguished art research libraries in the country, with more than 285,000 volumes in over 65 languages. Focusing on post-medieval European and American art, the collection is outstanding in the fields of Italian and Northern Renaissance, Baroque, and nineteenth-century French art, the history of photography, and international contemporary art, as well as theory and visual culture.
The library’s special collections enhance both library and museum holdings. Highlights include the founding collection of Robert Sterling Clark's rare books, the history of photomechanical reproduction, early illustrated printed books, decorative arts and sample books, twentieth- and twenty-first century artists’ books, and archival collections.
special collections book of the month
Mary Ann Beinecke Collection
First published in 1842, this volume made an important contribution to the nineteenth-century Gothic Revival, during which English artists rediscovered decorative styles from their country's medieval past. Few published sources of the Victorian era offered information on historic designs, and The Encyclopedia of Ornament was warmly received and widely praised for the meticulous rendering of its plates.
Arranged in chronological order, this richly illustrated compilation traces a long history of ornamentation: ironwork of the thirteenth century; painted tiles of the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries; wood carvings and panels of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries; fifteenth-century ornamental drapery; sixteenth-century book bindings; designs for jewelry, plate, and other decorative items by Hans Holbein and his contemporaries; lace and needlework of the seventeenth century; and architectural ornaments and stained glass of various periods from English and French cathedrals.
Serving the general public as well as visiting scholars and local students and faculty, the Clark library welcomes all visitors to use its reference and research services and enjoy its collections. An extensive array of electronic resources and reference materials support scholarly research in the field of Art History. Library staff are dedicated to assisting all users to access the library’s wide-ranging and diverse collections.
New Acquisitions Book of the Week
Photography in Southeast Asia: A Survey is a comprehensive attempt to map the emergence and trajectories of photographic practices in Southeast Asia. The narrative begins in the colonial era, at the point when the transfer of photographic technology occurred between visiting practitioners and local photographers. Illustrated with some 200 photographs, and with individual chapters dedicated to the countries of Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam, the book ranges from the immediate postwar era to present day, focusing on photographers who demonstrate strong agency and autonomy in their practice. The relationship between art and photography, which has been defined very narrowly over the decades, is re-examined in the process. Photography also offers an entry point into the cultural and social practices of the region, and a prism into the personal desires and creative decisions of its practitioners.
The library is open without appointment. Hours are:
Monday - Friday, 9 am to 5 pm
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All are welcome to email the library with reference/research questions.
The Library is closed to the public on the following holidays:
New Year's Day
Indigenous Peoples Day
Thanksgiving (2 days)
Christmas (2 days)
Extended hours are available to holders of Clark badges.
Mon-Thurs 8 am to 11 pm
Friday 8 am to 6 pm
Saturday 9 am to 6 pm
Sunday 9 am to 11 pm
With the exception of Christmas Day and New Year's Day the library is open during holidays to anyone eligible for extended hours.