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Art Library

Artists' Books: Introduction

Introduction

This is a guide to the collection of handmade and fine press books in the Margaret M. Bridwell Art Library’s Rare Book Room. The primary use of the index is to reveal materials, techniques, construction, and other unique characteristics of these books.

“Artists’ Books” are difficult to define, but Johanna Drucker explains in her book, The Century of Artists’ Books, “Artists’ books take every possible form, participate in every possible convention of book making, every possible ‘ism’ of mainstream art and literature, every possible mode of production, every shape, every degree of ephemerality or archival durability.” Artists take the bookmaking opportunity to disperse their work more widely than is often possible in a gallery setting, and often have control of the entire production process. Many of the items in the Bridwell Art Library Artists’ Books Collection are printed in a limited edition, and some are entirely unique and only available through the Margaret M. Bridwell Art Library.

The collection supports the teaching and research needs of the faculty and students at the University of Louisville, with specific emphasis on areas of study in the Hite Art Institute. The Artists’ Books Collection has been built over decades through purchases made by the Art Librarian from the Art Library Endowment, and individual gifts from donors. The Art Librarian continues to add new materials to support the University of Louisville’s teaching and research needs.

Items in this collection may also be viewed in person by contacting the Margaret M. Bridwell Art Library, University of Louisville.

Conditions of Use

The Bridwell Art Library Artists’ Books Guide is provided for personal and/or scholarly use. The University of Louisville does not make copyright claims to the works in the guide, and it is the user’s responsibility to limit their use of the images herein to educational and scholarly purposes, to interpret fair use guidelines, and/or to obtain copyright permission from the rightsholder(s) of each individual work. To learn more about fair use guidelines, refer to the University of Louisville Fair Use web page. For additional information about permissions and use, contact Margaret M. Bridwell Art Library, University of Louisville.

Citing an Artist Book

To cite an image from the index, follow the style guidelines as provided by MLA, APA, etc. and include its Reference URL (found by following the link in the header above the digital file). For example, in MLA style, you would write a citation of an image as:

Hachenski, Dawn. The Prairies. 2007. Margaret M. Bridwell Art Library, Louisville. Margaret M. Bridwell Art Library Artists’ Books Index Online. Web. 26 July 2016. <https://digital.library.louisville.edu/cdm/ref/collection/abi/id/451>.

To cite a book from this collection, follow the style guidelines as provided by MLA, APA, etc. For example, in MLA style, you would write the citation of a book as:

Hachenski, Dawn. The Prairies. Rosendale, NY: Women’s Studio Workshop, 2007. Print.

About the Cataloging

The Artists' Books collection uses controlled vocabulary from the ARLIS/NA Artists’ Books Thesaurus as well as the Getty Research Institute’s Art & Architecture Thesaurus.

Unique to the Artists’ Books Guide are the following:

  1. Style - Uses the ARLIS/NA Artists’ Books Thesaurus (ABT).
  2. Material - Uses the Getty Research Institute’s Art and Architecture Thesaurus (AAT).
  3. Technique - Uses the Getty Research Institute’s Art and Architecture Thesaurus (AAT).

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