Research Guides

Looking for information about an artist, a work of art, or an art technique

1. Background Information: Reference Books

  • BENEZIT: Dictionary of Artists (N 40 .D5213 2006)
  • Art Speak: a guide to contemporary ideas, movements and buzzwords (N 6490 .A87 1990)
  • Art Spoke: a guide to modern ideas, movements and buzzwords (N 6447 .A85 1993)
  • Who’s Who in American Art (N 6536 .W4)
  • Who Was Who in American Art, 1564-1975 (N 6536 .W5)
  • Artists in Michigan: 1900-1976 (N 6530 .M4 B3)
  • 300 Years of American Art; 2 vols. (N 6536 Z4)

2. In-depth information

Artist Files (list available on the KIA Library Web site)

  • Local/regional artists
  • Artists with works in the KIA permanent collection

Electronic databases
A. Michigan E-Library ( from home)

  • CAMIO: database of high resolution digital images from prominent museums
  • Biography and Genealogy Master Index: index to biographical resources (must access through Michigan E-Library)
  • Academic OneFile: magazine and journal articles (must access through Michigan E-Library)
  • MeL Michigana: digital image collection of photographs, historical documents and assorted information pertaining to Michigan

B. Art Abstracts online (KIA Library only): articles from art magazines and journals
C. artist biographies and (at KIA Library only) art auction information
D. Biography Resource Center (Kalamazoo Public Library): biographical information

Links available via the Meader Library catalog

3. Searching for artists

Is your artist represented in the KIA permanent collection?


1. Consult the Artist Files (list available on the KIA Library website).
2. Consult reference sources from the Reference Books list above.
3. Consult appropriate databases:

  • Biography and Genealogy Master Index (must access through Michigan E-Library)
  • (available only via computers at Meader Library)
  • Academic OneFile: general magazine articles (must access through Michigan E-Library)
  • Art Abstracts Online: articles from art magazines and journals (available only via computers at Meader Library)

4. Try the Meader Library catalog
5. Try the MeLCat Library catalog
6. Try the WorldCat Library catalog(home version)

IF NO: Skip step No. 1 above and proceed to No. 2!

4. Other art-related Web sites

Guide to Using Electronic Resources

I. How to use KIACat

  1. Go to the Meader Library Catalog.
  2. Click “Begin Search.”

Locate a book of photographs by Ansel Adams

  1. Select AUTHOR search.
  2. Type Adams, Ansel.
  3. How many of his books does the KIA Library own?
  4. Write the title of one book.

Find a book on how to paint in watercolors

  1. Select SUBJECT search.
  2. Type watercolors; how many matches do you get?
  3. Write the title of one such book the KIA Library owns

Locate a book on Japanese prints

  1. Select KEYWORD search.
  2. Type Japanese print.
  3. How many books on this topic does the KIA Library own?
  4. Write the title of one book
II. Finding articles from magazines and journals using Art Abstracts Online

(This can only be done from within the library, using the library’s computer.)

  1. Go to the Meader Library home page.
  2. Click “Library Catalog and other catalogs.”

Find an article on woodfired glazes used in pottery

  1. What is the title of the article?
  2. What publication is the article in?
  3. Find one article that is full-text.