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Art History Research at Yale: Books


This page will help you locate book (a.k.a. "monographic") sources on art topics, including dissertations and theses and catalogues raisonnés. Books can be great starting points for research as they can provide broader and more comprehensive information than articles found in magazines and journals. Books take longer to publish than articles though, so the information found in them may be less up-to-date than what might be found in a journal article. Books may provide photographs, drawings, and details of artworks not found in articles or online.

Catalogues raisonnés

catalogue raisonnè is a comprehensive list of works created by an architect, firm, artist, or designer - or work created in a particular medium by an artist. Reproductions of the artworks are also included, along with the date, provenance, location and history of the artist and their work.

The Arts Library holds close to 3,000 catalogues raisonnès and several hundred more are located in other libraries on campus. To locate catalogues raisonnès in Yale libraries, search the library catalog (and search Worldcat for holdings in other libraries).  Try using the following advanced keyword searches:

  • catalogue raisonnès and the architect's name (e.g. catalogue raisonnès and Alvar Aalto)
  • werkverzeichnis and the architect's name (e.g., werkverzeichnis and Walter Gropius)
  • complete paintings/drawings/prints or sculpture and the artist's or designer's name (complete paintings and Leonardo da Vinci)
  • complete works and the architect's name (e.g., complete works and Zaha Hadid)

Find Books at Yale and in Haas Arts Library

Searching for books

ORBIS is the main online public access catalog (OPAC) for Yale University and includes an Advanced Search option. ORBIS contains records for over 13 million items located in 15 libraries on the Yale campus and at the Library Shelving Facility (LSF).

Quicksearch combines the Orbis and Morris (Law Library) catalogs and searches Articles+ and Digital Collections all in one convenient fast search.

Finding books in the Haas Arts Library   stacks map

Main Level
All Oversized (+) Books
Oversized Reference Collection and Serials (with circulating books)
All Current Periodicals
All Open & Closed Reserves
Patron Shelves

Lower Level
All Regular-sized Books
Regular-sized Reference Collection and Serials (with circulating books)
All Folio-sized Books

Library of Congress classification system
N Visual arts
NA Architecture
NB Sculpture
NC Drawing; Design; Illustration
ND Painting
NE Print media
NJ 18 (A classification unique to Yale Arts Library. Locate books on a single artist or architect here, published before 2017)
NK Decorative arts
NX Arts in general
TP Chemical technology (includes some ceramics/pottery)
TR Photography
TT Handicrafts; Arts and crafts

Find books BEYOND Yale

These databases allow you to search other research library catalogs internationally. In order to BORROW books you find here located beyond Yale, see the services we provide - such as Borrow Direct and Interlibrary Loan - on the Get It @ Yale page.