The Index of Christian Art becomes the Index of Medieval Art

Princeton University recently announced that their venerable Index of Christian Art officially changed its name to the Index of Medieval Art as of July 1, 2017. The name was changed to more accurately reflect the current content. The Index covers multiple medieval faith traditions, including Jewish and Islamic art and both religious and secular imagery, from early apostolic times until the 16th century.

The Index of Medieval Art was founded by Princeton Professor Charles Rufus Morey in 1917 and is the largest archive of medieval art in the world. At present, it offers access to approximately 200,000 images and related information in a physical index; about half of these currently also exist in an online subscription database.

The Getty Research Institute Library provides online access to the Index’s database, which is available on-site. In addition, the Research Library is one of only four institutions in the world to hold a repository copy of the physical Index, which includes Subject and Photographic files.


Coat of Arms Held by a Woman and a Greyhound, Jean Fouquet, 1455. Hours of Simon de Varie. The J. Paul Getty Museum, 85.ML.27.2v

The physical Index is conveniently located adjacent to the medieval section of the Photo Archive on the L3 level of the Research Library. The Photo Archive houses approximately 176,000 photographs representing medieval architecture, sculpture, panel painting, illuminated manuscripts, and minor arts. Cross-references can be made between the Photo Archive and the Index. For example, cataloguing data from both archives can be used to identify and locate images and information in both collections. A copy of the Index of Jewish Art is also shelved nearby.

First-time users of the Index or the Photo Archive are strongly encouraged to contact us to arrange an orientation.

-Tracey Schuster, Head of Permissions and Photo Archive Services

Potential delays in processing requests from the Library Annex

Due to a large book move, requests for materials from the Library Annex may be delayed by a day or two beginning July 17, through September 1, 2017.

As a reminder, the regular schedule for requesting and receiving materials may be found on our website.

Thank you for your understanding. If you have any questions, please contact Circulation at centercirc@getty.edu.

SCIPIO Art and Rare Book Sales Catalogs

The easiest way to find an auction catalog held by the Research Library is to do a keyword search in Primo Search by entering the auction date in the YYYYMMDD format, e.g., 19420618 for June 18, 1942. If we do not have the auction catalog, the best place to search for a copy is in the SCIPIO database.

SCIPIO, available onsite at the Research Library, contains bibliographic records for over 300,000 sales catalogs held by 25 institutions worldwide and is updated daily. The database includes catalogs spanning from the late 16th century to the present from all major North American and European auction houses as well as important private sales. Records contain information on dates and places of sale, catalog title, the auction house, sellers, institutional holdings, and other information.

A link to SCIPIO can be found in Primo Search, the Article and Research Database A-Z list and Art Sales and Collecting list, or it can be searched through the Art Discovery Group Catalogue.

One of the easiest ways to search in SCIPIO is by date. The date is entered in the MMDDYYYY format. One can also search for sales within a specific month (MMYYYY) or within a date range, by using a hyphen between the years (YYYY-YYYY), the months and years (MMYYYY-MMYYYY), or the complete dates (MMDDYYYY-MMDDYYYY). Dates can be combined with other search terms such as auction house or title word.

– Lois White, Head of Research Services

New Acquisitions: 20th century Italian architecture periodicals

Reference librarians at the Research Library wear many hats. For me, one of the most enjoyable duties of the past year has been working in tandem with Maristella Casciato, the Getty Research Institute’s senior curator for architectural collections, to identify gaps in the library’s architectural holdings.

The library’s collections were originally formed through the acquisition of personal libraries of important scholars such as Ulrich Middeldorf, Erwin Panofsky, and Nikolaus Pevsner, among others. While this has provided a solid foundation upon which to build, there will always be areas that need to be filled in either because we didn’t have the opportunity to acquire them earlier or because their historical importance was not immediately clear.

Recently, one of the areas we are strengthening is 20th century Italian architectural periodical holdings. While this is an ongoing process, we have made significant progress through both piecemeal purchasing and the acquisition of collections. We hope our recently expanded holdings of the following titles will allow for a more comprehensive research experience.

L’Architettura (Milano)

Le Arti (Milano)

Casabella (Milano)

Casabella continuità (Milano)

Comunità (Milano)

Controspazio (Bari)

Domus (Milano)

Inpiù (Milano)

Marcatrè (Genova/Milano)

Quaderni di architettura (Roma)

-Aimee Lind, Reference Librarian

Focus on E-Resources: JSTOR grows each month!

Recently added titles to JSTOR, the digital library of academic journals, books, and primary sources, include the following that are available on-site only.

Film Criticism
A peer-reviewed, online publication focusing on the field of cinema and media studies.
Vol. 30, No. 1 (Fall, 2005) – Vol. 39, No. 3 (Spring, 2015)
Publisher: Allegheny College

Mosaic: A Journal for the Interdisciplinary Study of Literature
A quarterly journal presenting the theoretical, practical, and cultural dimensions of literary works.
Vol. 1, No. 1 (October, 1967) – Vol. 28, No. 4 (December, 1995)
Publisher: University of Manitoba

The Classical Outlook
A journal for teachers of Latin, Greek, and classical humanities in K-12, colleges, and universities.
Vol. 1, No. 1 (November, 1923) – Vol. 13, No. 8 (May, 1936) (previous title, Latin Notes);
Vol. 14, No. 1 (October, 1936) – Vol. 90, No. 1 (Fall, 2013)
Publisher: American Classical League

Thresholds
The annual peer-reviewed journal of the Department of Architecture at MIT.
Coverage: Nos. 1-40 (1992-2012) (Summer/Autumn, 2012)
Publisher: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Wiener Studien
A journal of classical philology, patristics, and Latin tradition.
Coverage: Vol. 92 (1979) – Vol. 127 (2014)
Publisher: Austrian Academy of Sciences Press

To search for more titles in JSTOR, visit https://www.jstor.org.

Susan Flanagan, Collection Development Librarian for Electronic Resources

New Acquisitions: Rare 20th century Japanese photography publications

A recent purchase of early 20th century Japanese photography publications from a dedicated collector, Tom Jacobson, offers extremely rare material for researchers to consult first hand and deepens the Research Library’s coverage of the topic.

Jacobson notes that “most of these kinds of books were destroyed during the war, as the fires in major cities decimated libraries and photographers’ archives” therefore making these types of titles rare in library collections worldwide. Indeed, several of the titles acquired are only held by our library.

The Japan Photographic Annual, 1936-37 (Tōkyō; Ōsaka: Asahi Shinbunsha, Taishō 14, 1925-). 91-S35.

The library now has a collection of 82 titles covering the period of 1920-1960. Half of the volumes predate the end of World War II. The majority of the items are annuals, monographs, and bound journals published during the period. The remaining items are retrospective in nature, exhibition catalogues, and reference materials.

The publications form a coherent study collection for scholars interested in the history of photography and modernism in Japan while making the library one of the very few in this country to hold materials published in Japan during the early 20th century.

The full list of titles is available in Primo Search.

-James Cheney, Collection Development Librarian

Saturday, May 27: Moth treatment scheduled in the Research Library

In response to some moth sightings, an organic moth treatment has been scheduled for the entire Getty Research Institute building starting Saturday, May 27, at 11:00 p.m. All carpeted areas, including reader carrels, will be treated.

The building will re-open on Sunday, May 28 (note that there will be intermittent noise associated with a follow-up vacuuming taking place throughout the building that day).

In preparation, please remove any items from the floor in your work area and place them on your desk, counter spaces, or shelves. These include boxes, paper, or any other materials that might obstruct access to the carpet. You do not need to worry about chairs, chair mats, or trash cans. Please also be certain you have removed any collection materials that might be on or near the floor.

If you have food items stored in your workspace, you should remove them prior to the treatment. If you are unable to do this, you may consider discarding these items when you return.

Focus on E-Resources: Latin American databases

In the spirit of Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, a Getty-led initiative exploring Latin America and Latino Art dialogues with Los Angeles that will take place September 2017 – January 2018, we’d like to highlight two databases that relate to Latin America.

HLAS Online Handbook of Latin American Studies

Edited by the Hispanic Division of the Library of Congress and in continuous publication since 1936, this resource is a bibliography of Latin American works selected and annotated by scholars. Each year, more than 130 international academics choose over 5,000 works for inclusion. It is multidisciplinary, alternating annually between the social sciences and the humanities.

HAPI Hispanic American Periodicals Index

A project of University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Latin American Institute, this index provides complete bibliographic citations to articles, book reviews, documents, original literary works, and other materials published since 1970 about Latin America and the Caribbean. Coverage is from the arts and humanities to political, economic, and social issues. This index is available to on-site only.

For a quick tour of HAPI, check out this video:

Susan Flanagan, Collection Development Librarian for Electronic Resources