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The University of Manitoba campuses are located on original lands of Anishinaabeg, Cree, Ojibwe-Cree, Dakota, and Dene peoples, and on the National Homeland of the Red River M├ętis. More

Art History: Researching Art

Art History

Researching a specific subject

  • Examine the work of art carefully and describe what is depicted.
  • Check specialized dictionaries to locate information on the subject.
  • Consult all types of reference material, exhibition catalogues and any 
    pertinent web sites to learn more about the subject and symbols
  • Read the literature from which the story or symbols might have derived.
  • Learn as much about the artist as possible.
  • Formulate a record of the work and place it within its art historical  period.
  •  Compile a reading list on the social history of the period

How to find information on artist

  • What country are they from? 
  • In what period did your artist work?
  • Were they part of an artistic movement?
  • What media are you searching?
The answers will give you keywords to use when searching the library catalogue and article databases.

Researching by Themes and Subjects

Materials for Research

  • art history survey books (look in N 5300)
  • dictionaries and encyclopedias
  • comprehensive bibliographies
  • exhibition catalogues
  • museum/galleries collections (catalogues and online)
  • academic journals - print and online
  • web - museums, art departmenrts, art associations