Thursday, March 3, 2011

Archives of American Art

The Smithsonian Institution's Archives of American Art is an unparalleled online and bricks-and-mortar resource for art students, art historians, visual arts researchers, art collectors, writers, artists, and anyone for whom art matters. AAA's still-increasing holdings currently exceed 16 million letters; artists', dealers', and collectors' diaries and scrapbooks; critical and scholarly manuscripts; business and financial records of museums, galleries, schools, and arts organizations; photographs; sketches and sketchbooks; rare printed matter; film, audio, and video recordings; and oral histories.

Recently, AAA redesigned its Website, not only improving site navigation but also enhancing its already extraordinary content. The result of a more-than-year-long effort, the site also now makes possible the sharing of podcasts of oral history interviews and online exhibitions and publishing. Some key new features are:

✦ Easily accessible fully digitized collections (More than 110 collections, searchable alphabetically by creator's name or organization and by category or topic, have been scanned to date. See one of the most recent to become available, the collection of records of Leo Castelli Gallery, covering 40 years of the gallery's operation.)

✦ A gallery search function for locating individual images, sketches, and documents

✦ A "carousel" on the Homepage that highlights primary source documents in the collections

✦ A hyperlinked, year-by-year archive of all past exhibitions

✦ "Quick Links" on every page to the image gallery, alphabetized oral history interviews, the bi-annual print magazine The Journal, a monthly e-mail newsletter, and AAA's informative blog

Research centers and offices are located in Washington, D.C., and New York City, where original papers or media may be accessed and viewed (be sure to make an appointment in advance of a visit); affiliated research centers in Boston, Fort Worth, San Francisco, and San Marino provide copies of the AAA's unrestricted microfilm. The Lawrence A. Fleischman Gallery, at the Donald W. Reynolds Center in D.C., presents exhibitions of primary source materials. 

Information about gallery talks and lectures, new exhibitions, and newly digitized collections is found in the News and Events section of AAA's Website. Interlibrary loans and purchases of copies of images may be arranged through the site via the Ask Us page.

Archives of American Art on FaceBook and Twitter

Publications of the Archives of American Art


M.L. Gallagher said...

Sometimes I think of all the amazing art and wonder you find and I wonder... how on earth does the world stay afloat in space with all these objects stored in museums and galleries and attics and hallways? There's just soooo much to see and feel and experience! What a rich world we live in -- and waht a richness of spirit you bring in your sharing.

Noah said...


I am an idependent art researcher currently specializing in Rothko.
The Mark Rothko Southwest History Project explores Rothko's unreported but transformational experiences with American Indians which began in 1938. I am the first Rothko researcher to use social media as my primary research and sharing platform but I would like find out if the AAA would be interested in publishing my findings which are mostly in the form of power points at this time. Hundreds of artist, scholars, and museum directors have followed the project and many have participated.
Noah G. Hoffman
Mark Rothko Southwes History Project

Maureen said...


I've passed your comment along.