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SAIC Access to the Franke Reading Room: Photoduplication

How to access the Franke Reading Room to consult the collections of the Ryerson & Burnham Libraries and the Art Institute of Chicago Archives

Photoduplication Policies

A variety of photoduplication options are available to researchers in the reading room. All photoduplication of library and archival materials is governed by the following policies:

  • Works of art, text, and other content appearing in these reproductions may be protected by copyright or related interests that are not owned by the museum. It is your responsibility to obtain whatever copyright or other permissions may be required from an artist, the artist’s agent or estate, or any other third party rights holder. By accepting or using these reproductions, you agree to indemnify the museum and hold it harmless against any and all claims, demands, and/or actions of any nature, including the expenses thereof, arising as a result of your use of the reproductions.

  • Permission to examine material does not automatically include the right to duplicate it. The Art Institute may decline a photoduplication request because the materials are oversize or too fragile, or because the extent of the request falls outside the fair use standard or beyond current staff capacity.

  • Prepayment for photographic services is required for all orders.

  • Researchers are not permitted to use digital scanners or professional photography equipment.

  • Researchers who would like to take study photographs of materials in the archival collections must consult with the reference desk staff and complete the Permission to Photograph Archival Collections form (available at the reference desk). Restricted and unprocessed materials may not be photographed for any reason without the explicit permission of the archives staff.

Policies: Photocopies and Scans

Photocopies and Scans

When the reading room is open, patrons may scan general collection library materials to email or USB drive or may print copies. All materials must be approved by a reference librarian before using the scanner as some items are deemed too fragile, large, or valuable to be copied on our scanning equipment.

Archival materials, artist files, and special collections items may not be scanned on the reading room equipment.

Policies: Photography


Reading room visitors are welcome to photograph materials themselves for research purposes. Cameras without a flash may be used to photograph books and journals from the library collections. Photographing archival materials requires special permission. The use of professional photography equipment and personal scanners is not permitted in the reading room. Find additional information regarding reading room policies.

Orders for digital files of library materials will be accepted by library staff only. Similarly, orders for digital files of archival materials will be accepted by archives staff only.

High-resolution images are captured as 300dpi (publication quality) digital file and delivered digitally. Lower-resolution PDF scans may also be requested from the archival collections.

Orders for new images of library materials must be placed through the Art Institute of Chicago's Image Licensing department. Orders of new and existing images from the Archives, including our Images and Media database, can be submitted using this form.

  • Photography orders take up to 12 weeks to complete (from the time payment is received).

  • Long-distance requests are accepted, but additional fees apply.

  • Photography fees:

    • Archival materials, new photography: $30 per image

    • Archival materials, existing files: $15 per file

    • All other materials: $15 per image

  • Other fees may apply.

Photography of Art Institute of Chicago art collection materials must be requested through our Image Licensing site.

Contact Us

Ryerson & Burnham Libraries

For information on the museum collections, library collections, and library services, please contact Library staff at


The Art Institute of Chicago Archives

For information on our collections, the history of the Art Institute and the School of the Art Institute, donation proposals, corrections, comments, and general questions, please contact Archives staff at