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Critical and Curatorial Studies

This guide provides resources on topics related to critical and curatorial studies.

About the Collection

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The artist files are housed in the Vertical Files Collection, located on Level 3 of the Music, Art & Architecture Library, in the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre

The vertical files make up an extensive filing system that provides a wealth of information in the areas of art, architecture, and community and regional planning, dating back to the 1950s. The paper-based files can include pamphlets, exhibition announcements and reviews, newspaper clippings, planning reports, unpublished manuscripts, biographical information, correspondence, and other ephemeral material.

For a list of similar files throughout Canada, check the Artists in Canada database.

Other local resources for artist files include: Vancouver Art Gallery Library, Vancouver Public Library, and Emily Carr University Library

Searching the Collection

Search Summon and the Library Catalogue to find online records for items in the Vertical Files Collection. Suggested searches include:

  • "Firstname Lastname file"
  • "Lastname, Firstname" birth year
  • "Lastname, Firstname"

For example: "Emily Carr file" or "Smith, Gordon" 1919. If an artist has a common name try to include a middle name or initial, if known. 

Artist files are identified in the item record by their Location: I.K. BARBER LIBRARY vertical files (non-circulating).




Accessing the Collection

To access the vertical files, go to the Information Desk on Level 3 of the Music, Art and Architecture Library during Reference Hours and library staff will assist you in retrieving and checking out these materials. Files are Library Use Only and must must viewed onsite within the library.

You may use the library's scanners or copiers to copy these materials for educational use and personal research. For further details on copyright guidelines and citation recommendations, see Citing Sources.

Donating to the Collection

The Music, Art & Architecture Library welcomes donations of materials; however, due to space and processing constraints, not all contributions may be accepted. To donate, please complete the Vertical File Donation Form