History of Art

Publicly Available Digitized Material

If you are having trouble finding an older book or publication electronically, check both Hathi Trust and Internet Archive. Each of these databases has digitized books and other types of publications that have been made available from member institutions. There is a wealth of information in each that may help you in your research.

Some Books From The Collection

Search Catalogs


What is this searching? The OSU Library Catalog searches for print, electronic and other formats in the OSU Libraries collections. More Search Options >>


What is this searching? The OhioLINK catalog allows searching and requesting of scholarly materials located in the 90+ college and university member libraries around Ohio, plus the State Library of Ohio. More Search Options >>


What is this searching? WorldCat@OSU searches across 7 key databases for books, articles, and more. More Search Options >>

What is this searching? The SearchOhio Catalog allows searching and requesting of popular books, DVDs, CDs and other materials from 20+ public library systems throughout the state of Ohio. More Search Options >>

Ebook Options

To find ebooks in the library's catalog, you can use the Advanced Search function to search by material type. Here are the steps: 

  • Visit library.osu.edu.
  • Click on "Books and More." 
  • Click on "More Options" under the search bar.
  • Click on "Use Advanced Search" under the search bar.
  • Use the search fields to input keywords for your search and select "E-book" under "Material Type" (box to the right, under the search bars)

You can also do a normal search, and if there is a book you want that is only available physically, please contact the Art & Design Librarian to discuss your options. There maybe an ebook edition that is not appearing in your search results or one can be purchased.

Below are some links for ebook platforms available to you with your OSU log-in credentials.

Library of Congress Classification for Art

The Library of Congress call number system designates that the letter 'N' represent the subject 'art', hence most of the books at the Fine Arts Library have call numbers beginning with N. But we have many other subjects in our stacks, such as AMs for museum studies, Cs for archeology, Gs for fashion, Ps for literature/film, TRs for photography, Zs for book studies, and more!

AM: Museum Studies

N: Visual Arts

NA Architecture

NB Sculpture

NC: Drawing, Design, Illustration

ND: Painting

NE Printmaking

NK: Decorative arts

NX: Arts in general, Mixed Media, Performance Art

PN: Art and Literature/Film

TR: Photography

Z: Books (General), Writing, Paleography, Book Industries and Trade, Libraries, Bibliography (This section also contains typography and history of the book).

Requesting Books

Finding Artists

Finding information on artists can seem easy by using Google, which provides a wealth of art world blogs and images. While looking online, make sure that information is authentic. That is, sources online should have been created and maintained by: Museums, scholars, online peer-edited journals and institutions of higher learning. Blogs and crowd-sourced sites can contain sources that are biased or in accurate. 

Great sites to look at online include: 

  • Museum websites
  • Arts organization sites
  • Artist's own webpages for biographies, CV's, artist statements and works published on the artist. This is not only helpful for living artists - many artists who have now passed have websites that are kept up by their estates. 

Self-portrait, 1554 - Sofonisba Anguissola

Sofonisba Anguissola, Self Portrait, 1554. Source: WikiArt

Cosmic Donut, 2008 - Kenny Scharf

Kenny Scharf, Cosmic Donut, 2008. Source: WikiArt