Policies (Fine Arts Library)

To learn more about any of the following policies, click on the policy name to expand it. Click on the name again, or the "collapse this section" link, to collapse the information.

  • Circulation Policies

 Undergraduate Students  45 days
 Graduate Students  120 days
 Staff  120 days 
 Faculty  120 days
 Indiana Residents  30 days

Reserve materials and CD-ROMs are normally checked out for 2 hours.
Only two reserve items may be checked out at a time.

Materials may be recalled after a two week loan period. Materials that have been recalled may not be renewed and are subject to a $25.00 recall fine if not returned within the specified time frame.

The following materials CANNOT be checked out:

Reference books
Current and bound Periodicals
Special collection items
Oversize Collection books

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  • 14 Day Checkout Policy

About 14 Day checkouts:

Prior to the fall semester of 2010, about eleven percent of the books in open stacks included books designated as “Does not circulate” (DNC). At present only about one percent of the books in the open stacks continue to be designated in this manner. The ten percent that were formerly DNCs have been converted to a new 14 day loan period. This change allows formerly non-circulating titles to be checked out by IU students, staff and faculty in Bloomington. These books are also available for document delivery among the IU campuses.

Indiana Residents:

14 Day books do not circulate to Indiana residents but may be used in the Fine Arts Library during regular hours.

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  • Collection Development Policy


Collection: Fine Arts                                                     Collecting responsibility: Kristina Keogh

1. Introduction

          a. Purpose. The purpose of this statement is to describe the collection development policies of the Fine Arts Library which support instruction and research in the  visual arts, including the history of art, studio art, and archaeology.             

          b. Audience.  This collection supports instruction and research for students and faculty of the School of Fine Arts to the M.F.A. level in studio practice and to the Ph.D. level in art history and supports interdisciplinary programs between the School, African Studies, and classical Studies and other programs having an art-related curriculum, including Afro-American studies, American Studies, Apparel merchandising and interior design, Arts adminstration, Folklore, East Asian Languages and cultures, Jewish Studies, Latin American and Caribbean Studies, Near Eastern Languages and Literature, History, India Studies, Religious Studies, Theatre and drama, and Western European Studies. Faculty throughout the University are served by this collection including forty-eight faculty in the School of Fine Arts (art history and studio), curators in the IU Art Museum , and faculty having joint appointments in departments such as African Studies, American Studies, East Asian Languages and Cultures, and Near Eastern Languages and Literature. The collection also supports the research and exhibition requirements of the Art Museum curatorial, conservation, and education staff as well as the staff of the School of Fine Arts Gallery. Indiana residents including art collectors, the general public, and gallery dealers also use the FA Library collections.
          c. Description of institution/department and clientele. The Henry Radford Hope School of Fine Arts, founded in 1865, is today considered one of the premier art schools in the country. There are over 500 undergraduate majors and over 130 graduate students who pursue courses in art history and studio practice. Over 5,000 students annually enroll in art/art history ranking this department among the largest in the College of Arts and Sciences. 
     An internationally distinguished faculty of over fifty artists and art historians direct a wide range of programs. Studio areas include ceramics, drawing and painting, graphic desgin, metalsmithing and jewelry design, digital media/computer arts, photography, textiles, printmaking, and sculpture. The Department of the History of Art offers programs in  classical art, medieval art, Renaissance  and baroque art, Modern art, the arts of Africa, Oceania, and Pre-Columbia America, Asian art, and art theory.
          d. Brief overview of the collecton
                     i. History of the collection.
  The first Fine Arts Library was established in the late 1930s as part of the departmental office of the Univesity Library which was then located in Franklin Hall. In 1941, Henry Radford Hope became chairman of the Fine Arts Department and a Fine Arts Center was created by remodeling Mitchell Hall and Mitchell Hall Annex which included a small art library numbering about 2,360 volumes and a collection of slides by 1942. By 1956, the Department of FA had grown to sixteen full-time faculty with offices in four separate buildings. Plans began for a new Fine Arts Building which was opened in 1962 including about 4,500 sq. ft. for the Fine Arts Library and a capacity of 20,000 volumes. By the time BJ Irvine became head of the library in 1969, she was already involved with planning for a greatly enhanced Fine Arts Library facility that would be in a new Art Museum building. During the mid-1970s, the collections expanded rapidly, and plans for a new library were developed as she worked with the architects of I.M.Pei & Associates. Under Irvine's guidance the library was moved in to the new Art Museum in August 1981 at whic time the collections were over 54,000 volumes. The new space equaled 21,000 sq. ft. By 2004, the collections included over 130,000 volumes, over 50,000 mounted art reproductions, a circulating slide collection of over 10,000 slides, over 200 CD ROMS and DVDs, over 140 videotapes, and over 60,000 microforms.
                     ii. Collection strengths and weaknesses. Collection strengths include the following: coverage of the major art historical periods from ancient art through the twentieth century with an emphasis on painting, printmaking,sculpture, drawing, and mixed media of the twentieth century; nineteenth and twentieth century architecture of the United States; ancient Greek and Roman architecture; Byzantine and Medival architecture with an emphasis on the monuments of Great Britain, France, and Germany; and the arts of Pre-Columbia, Africa, and Oceania; and studio practice with an emphasis on artists' books, painting, drawings, sculpture, photography, printmaking; and the history and techniques of ceramics, photography, graphic design, digital media/computer arts, jewelry and metalsmithing, papermaking, and printed, dyed, woven and constructed textiles. The arts of China and Russia are collected with an emphasis on painting and sculpture. Generally, our collections are weakest on the arts of Asia (except for Chinese painting and sculpture), the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and modern architecture (all countries except the U.S.).
                     iii. Subject areas emphasized or de-emphasized. Subject focus on the following areas: major art historical periods from ancient art through the twentieth century with an emphasis on painting, printmaking. sculpture, drawing, and mixed media and digital arts of the twentieth century; nineteenth and twentieth century architecture of the United States; ancient Greek and Roman architecture; Byzantine and Medieval architecture with an emphasis on the monuments of Great Britain, France, and Germany; and the arts of Pre-Columbia, Africa, and Oceania; and studio practice with an emphasis on painting, drawing, sculpture, printmaking, and the history  and techniques of ceramics, photography, graphic design, digital media/computer arts, jewelry and metalsmithing, papermaking, artists' books, and printed, dyed, woven and constructed textiles. Major survey histories of art are collected for all countries, cultures, and historical periods. General works on the arts of China and Russia are collected with an emphasis on painting and sculpture. Generally, our collectioins are weakest in the arts of Asia (except for Chinese painting and sculpture), the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and modern architecture (all countries except the U.S.).

                      iv. Collection locations. Fine Arts collections are located primarily in the Fine Arts Library with related collections in the Research Collections/Wells Library, e.g., arts of the American Indian, Folklore Collection (vernacular architecture of the U.S. and other countries, details and decoration of vernacular architecture, and rural and farm architecture), "NX" (multi-media visual, language, and performing arts). Selected art reference materials also are in the Reference Services Department/Wells Library. The Business/SPEA has related materials on arts adminstration and marketing, and apparel merchandising.
     Other locations for fine arts materials include the Lilly Library, the Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction, and the Archives of Traditional Music.

II. Scope of coverage
          a. Languages collected and excluded. English and all Western European languages are widely collected. Limited selectioins are made among Chinese, Japanese, Russian, and other non-Roman languages.
          b. Geographical areas. Emphasis is on Europe, including art of classical Greece and Rome and the Latin East and Greek East for early Christian art. Focus is on Russia, Serbia, and Italy for Byzantine art and architecture from thd 7th to 15th century. Emphasis is on the United States including art of the American Indian. Another area of collection focus is Africa (primarily Sub-Sahara) as well as the arts of Pre-Columbia, Oceania, China and Japan, and limited coverage of India, the Islamic world, and Southeast Asia.
          c. Chronological periods.    All major historical periods of Western art from ancient through the twentieth century are collected. Emphasis is on the pre-twentieth art of Africa, China and Japan.
          d. Dates of publication. Generally, emphasis is on current publications with very selective retrospective collection. However, currrency of publication is not a limitation in art so that historical works or reprints may have as much significance as current titles.
          e. Formats collected and excluded.       
          Collected: periodicals; books; microforms; facsimiles; exhbition/museum publications; artists' books; CD ROMS; DVDs; videotapes; online databases; e-journals (when print is not available). Due to the need for high quality illustrations, print formats are preferred rather than digital media. Digital images are collected by the Visual Resources Center (VRC)  for access via DIDO (Digital Image Database Online). In addition, the Fine Arts Library collects digital image collections as needed to support the didactic requirements of the School of Fine Arts.
          Exclusions:  original prints and art objects (except when such items are part of a book or form a library-based package such as a portfolio); original manuscripts; slides (except for those  given to the library by the VRC); recordings (except when included as part of a book and/or periodical).

III. Collecting Responsibilty
                The  head of the Fine Arts Library is primarily responsible for collection development in this area. Collaborations, as appropriate, occurs with the collection managers for the following areas: African Studies; Afro-American Studies; Arts Administration; Central Eurasian Studies: Classical Studies; East Asian Studies; English and American Literature; Folklore; History; India Studies; Information Commons (Wells Library); Jewish Studies; Latin American and Caribbean Studies; Lilly Library; Middle  Eastern Studies; Music; Reference Services Department/Research Collections; Religious Studies; Slavic Studies; Theatre and Drama; and Western European Studies.

IV. Related Collections
                The Folklore Collection collects in the following areas: vernacular architecture of the U.S. and Canada, Great Britain, Austria, France, Germany, Scandinavia, and Switzerland; details and decoration of vernacular architecture; and rural and farm architecture.
                The Lilly Library collects in the following areas: livres d'artiste; modern British bookbinding; cartoons and caricatures of the War of 1812 and Abraham Lincoln; works illustrated by George Cruikshank; and original art for book illustration. In addition, the Lilly's  acquisition of works on manuscripts illumination relates to courses/research on Early Christian and medieval art.
                Subject and area specialists in Archaelogy, History, African Studies, East Asian Studies, Near Eastern Languages and LIteratures, Religious Studies, Classical Studies, and Western European Studies collect in areas related to the study of fine arts which may  be shelved in the Research Collections/Wells Library. Materials relating to apparel merchandising and interior design, and arts administration and marketing may be shelved in the Business/SPEA Library.
                The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction has research level collections on the nude in art and erotic art, and has the world's preeminent collection of sexual art, artifacts, photographs, and films which constitute a unique resource for research.
                The Archives of Traditional Music collects aural documentation of cultural groups which would relate to the study of African Art, art of the American Indian, and other indigenous cultures.

V. Principal sources of supply and major selection tools.
                Emphasis is on publishers of scholarly or technical material, university presses, art publishers, museums and galleries, and art auction houses (to a limited degree). Material published by any publisher may be acquired depending on content and quality and/or the significance of illustrations or iconographic material.
                Nearly all art and related  titles published by the following publishers are collected: Harry N. Abrams; Aperture; Ashgate Art & Architecture; Dover Publications; Getty Trust publications; Hudson Hills Press; Kodansha International; Penguin Group; Phaidon Press; Pindar Press; Praeger Publishers: Prestel Verlag; Skira/Rizzoli/St. Martin's Press; Thams and Hudson; Verlag Philip Von Zabern; and major U.S. and British university presses.
                The following major art book distributors are regularly utilized: D.A.P,; Erasmus; Otto Harrassowitz: Thomas Heneage Art Books; and the Scholar's Bookshelf. Significant exhibition catalogues (not published by trade publishers) are acquired through Worldwide Books  based on a list of  over ninety North American, British, and European museums and galleries identified by the Fine Arts Librarian. Book reviews in Art Documentation, Bulletin of the Art Libraries society/North America, Choice, and other journals may  be used for collection development as well as recommendations from faculty and students using the Fine Arts Library.

VI. Preservation
          a. Criteria for selection and/or mass deacidification. As an academic art research library, all materials collected have potential research valelu and are therefore preserved using procedures and/or techniques available through the IUL Preservation Department.
          b. High priority areas for preservation review and treatment. Nineteenth and early twentieth century journals and books should be given high priority  for preservation review/treatment. In addition, our historical and contemporary collection of artists' books merit high priority due to the unique and often fragile, limited edition of this material.

VII. Selection criteria for the ALF
          Fine arts selection criteria follow the "General guidelines for Selection of Materials for the ALF: ( Low-demand materials will be given first priority for ALF shleving. Ceased or cancelled serial runs also will be reviewed for ALF transfer as well as selected 19th and early 20th journals and monographs in order to preserve and protect materials with original prints or graphic art. Eastern European and Slavic language materials also will be given high priority for ALF shelving. If journal backfiles are available electronically, they will be considered for ALF storage.

VIII. Digital projects
          a. Criteria for selection for digitalization.
At this time, the primary fine arts digitization project is DIDO (Digital Image Database Online), created and developed by the Visual Resources Center. DIDO is based on the selection of images required for School of Fine Arts/Studio and History of Art Department courses. These criteria apply to nearly all material on DIDO with the exception of the IU Art Museum collection slides which also have been added to DIDO. As of 20044, over 40,000 images are accessible  via DIDO.

           b. Priorites for collections to be digitized. First priority is given to materials needed for classes as noted under "a".

IX. Other resources and libraries. The study of visual art and art history requires the examination or original art and vast historica archives/records which are commonly distributed throughout the world. Even research on the arts of the U.S. often requires use of multiple libraries and/or research collections. The Fine Arts Library is the largest art library in Indiana; however, the Indianapolis Museum of Art (IUAM) Library also holds considerable resources which are not in the IU Libraries, e.g., historical runs of auction/sales catalogues, early exhibition literature, and extensive  vertical files on artists in the IUAM. The University of Notre Dame has considerable holdings on medieval culture and manuscripts. The largest art library collections in North America are at the Art Institute of Chicago/Ryerson & Burnham Libraries, Avery/Architectural Library/Columbia University, Fogg Art Museum Library/Harvard University, Metropolitan Museum of Art Library, Cleveland Museum of Art Library, and the Getty Research Institute Library. In the Midwest, many other CIC libraries have significant art library holdings which complement those in Bloomington, e.g., University of Michigan (especially arts of the far east), University of Illinois (history of architecture), Northwestern University (arts of Africa); Ohio State University, University of Chicago (arts of the Near East and Far East), University of  Iowa (Center for the Book Arts, African art), and the University of Wisconsin (book arts, decorative arts, history of architecture). For the art, culture, and history of Africa, IUL is among the five largest collections in the U.S. including Northwestern, U.C.L.A., University of Iowa, and Yale University.

X. Consortial agreements. At this time, we have no formal consortial agreements with other art libraries.

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  • Exhibition Policies

Faculty, students, and staff may reserve the display cases in the Fine Arts Library foyer for exhibitions of library materials, art works created by a class, or their own art work. Library display cases are intended primarily for exhibits relating to the visual arts. The FAL library director determines whether an exhibition will be scheduled. Three weeks is the usual display period.Contact library staff to reserve a time.

The display area is restricted to the wall case in the library foyer and the two small stand‑alone display cases. Exhibit items cannot be hung on the walls of the library foyer or in the library. Preferred objects for display in this area are books, flat paper works and small 3-dimensional objects. Not all types of art can be displayed in the cases due to size restrictions.Dimensions of the single wall case are 144" (L) x 24"(W) x 49" (H).Each of the two stand-alone cases is 24" (L) x 60" (W) x 9" (H).


The foyer is part of the Library and is not related to the School of Fine Arts Gallery or the Art Museum gallery spaces. The Library does not carry insurance for personal items on display, and the library staff cannot assume responsibility for works on display.

All exhibitors must observe the following requirements:


Books: All library books to be used in an exhibition must be checked out to the Fine Arts Library display case.


Hanging items: No nails, glue, masking tape, or scotch tape may be used in the display cases. If items need to be hung in the wall cases, use fishing line strung from the screw-eyes in the top of the case or over the door molding. Smaller items may be anchored with removable plastic adhesive.

No painting: No part of the cases or foyer may be painted.


Pads: Pads should be used under works of art when necessary to avoid scratching the cases.


Labels: Flat labels mounted on foamcore or cardboard are recommended. Self-adhesive labels should not be used for display labels. They leave a residue that cannot be removed or painted over.


Continuity: The items on display are expected to stay on display for the entire exhibition period. If a piece is needed for another purpose during the display period, it should not be included unless it can be replaced by another work. At no time other than during the installation, should the display look incomplete or unfinished.


Receptions: Receptions are at the discretion of the Head of the Fine Arts Library. Due to the elevated noise levels during receptions – the preferred times would be either Friday or Saturday evenings, when the library is closed.  Arrangements to use the School of Fine Arts Gallery kitchen to prepare food are made with the Head of the Fine Arts Library. The Library cannot be used as a kitchen during the reception. The exhibitor is required to clean the foyer after the reception. No food or other debris should be left-- if it cannot fit into the large trash receptacle outside the Library, it should be carried to the Fine Arts loading dock.

Installing/Uninstalling: All library fabric to be used for exhibitions should be folded and rehung carefully in the FAL hanging area, adjacent to the FAL kitchen. Exhibitors should leave the cases clean.


Ignoring the rules: The Library reserves the right to remove displays that do not conform to these rules.


Please direct any questions regarding the use of the display cases to library staff.

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  • Food and Drink Policy

Covered drinks are allowed in the Fine Arts Library.  Food is not allowed. Patrons are asked to pick up after themselves and to use the trash and recycling containers provided.

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  • Holds Policy

All books will remain on Hold for 10 days. Patrons who do not pick up books that are on Hold within 10 days will have their books removed from the Holds Shelf by Fine Arts Library staff.

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  • Overdue Policy

Regular Overdue Charges:

$ .25 per day ($12.50 maximum)
$25.00 fine for overdue recalls

Unreturned Materials Charges:

$20.00 database adjustment fee
$100.00 unreturned item fee (can vary with items of greater value)
$ 5.00 billing fee**
$12.50 maximum overdue fine**
**Charges not forgiven on return of material.

Fine Rate for Reserve Loans:

$ .02 (two cents) per minute.
If another patron requests a reserve item that is overdue, a $25.00 Reserve Recall Fine will also be charged.

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  • Non-Circulating and Restricted Materials from the ALF Policy

Non-circulating Materials:

ALF (Auxiliary Library Facility) will deliver non-circulating books to the Fine Arts Library for patron use in the Fine Arts Library.

Check out:

Patrons will have a 2 hour checkout and must look at the books in the workroom or in Branch Coordinator’s office.

Stacks Restricted Materials:

Selected books formerly shelved in the open stacks are now housed in the ALF and are listed in the online catalog as "Auxiliary Library Facility - Stacks, Restricted." These items may be requested for use at the Lilly Library or in the Wells Library GIMSS Reading Room. When requested, these materials will be delivered to and must be used exclusively in the requested destination.

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  • Quiet Policy

The Indiana University Libraries are committed to maintaining an atmosphere conducive to research and study with library materials. The Quiet Policy which follows has been developed to provide this environment.

Individuals are asked to respect the rights of all library users and to limit talking as described below.

Quiet Areas
No talking is permitted. Reserved for individual research and study of library materials.
The Fine Arts Library Reading Room and Stack areas are Quiet Areas.


Cell Phone Use

Cell phone use is not permitted anywhere in the library. 

Limited Talking Areas
Talking at a low level is permitted. Reserved for library assistance areas.
The Fine Arts Library circulation desk area is a limited talking area. No cell phone use, please.


Library Discussion Area
Talking at a low or normal conversation level is permitted. Reserved for students who need to consult with one another for such activities as class projects, tutoring and joint use of library materials.
The Fine Arts Library Seminar Room is a Library Discussion Area. Use of this room may be reserved in four hour blocks, see the circulation desk for availability.

Study Groups are not permitted.
Study groups are defined as meeting one or more of the following criteria:
Five or more individuals who:
1. Study together on a regular basis.
2. Enter, exit and/or remain in close proximity as a unit.
3. Have a set arrival, break and/or departure time.
4. Take roll.
5. Are required by the group or members of the group to be in the library.

Individuals who disregard this policy will be subject to University disciplinary action.

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  • Seminar Room Policy

Scheduling the seminar room

Reservations are on a first come, first served basis during the current semester. The seminar room may be reserved in advance for three days at a time, and up to four consecutive hours per day.  If no other patron has requested the room at the end of your scheduled reservation time you may continue to use the room.


To Reserve the Seminar Room

Patrons can reserve the seminar room by calling 855-3314, emailing, or by asking in person at the circulation desk.  Only a full time staff member can enter your reservation on the schedule.  Please provide your current email address, your full name and your current phone number when reserving the room.


Art Cart Use

·         The School of Fine Arts Art Cart is available for faculty and graduate students associated with the School of Fine Arts.

·         School of Fine Arts undergraduates need instructor authorization to use the art cart in the seminar room.


Food in the Seminar Room

·         Food is not permitted in the seminar room.

·         Failure to adhere to this policy will jeopardize your reservation.

Please do not abuse the policy.  Use of the seminar room is at the discretion of the library staff and ultimately the Head of the Fine Arts Library.


Patrons who would like an exception to the policy are asked to contact the Head of the Fine Arts Library, Kristina Keogh.   

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If you find a dead link anywhere on this website, please email the Fine Arts Library, or notify a staff member at the Fine Arts Library. Thanks!

last updated: 2/21/2014