New policies and procedures are in place for how the public can use the reading room. This page provides information on how to request items from the museum's Library and Archival collections. Additional information on finding and requesting research materials is available in this guide.
When Research Center staff respond to approve your research appointment request, we will provide you with credentials to sign in to the online catalog. To do this:
Click Sign In in the upper right corner of the screen:
Click Reading Room login:
Enter the credentials you received from the Research Center staff.
Once you have successfully signed in, your name should appear in the upper right corner of the screen:
You are now ready to place requests.
Archival materials, serials, and multi-volume sets have request buttons for each item. These appear on the right side of the screen:
Archival collections may be housed in multiple locations. In order to browse all containers for a given collection, click on the Description menu text reading "All." This will open the full container list to browse and request:
Certain types of oversized material—such as flatfiles, rolled tubes, and vertical file materials—are not barcoded, and therefore cannot be individually requested using this catalog. Instead, if you wish to view any of these materials, please find and request the container titled "Other oversized materials (flatfile, tube, vertical file)."
Select that container, then click on the link below "RBL > R&B Archives Stack A..." Finally, select the "Request" link, add any relevant comments (e.g., flatfile or tube numbers) and submit. Archives staff will then follow up with you to gather additional information regarding your request.
We will do our best to deliver materials as quickly as possible but we ask that you place your requests in the online catalog a minimum of one week prior to your appointment so that we can make sure the items will be available. If requests are not received one week in advance of your appointment date, we will cancel the appointment.
Input a keyword into the box and click Search to begin searching the online library catalog.
Input a keyword into the search box and then click Search to search through the archival collections.
Please note that the Institutional Archives, including the Imaging Archive, are not yet searchable here; please visit this page for information about these collections.
Online catalogs and databases maintained by the Ryerson & Burnham Libraries and Art Institute of Chicago Archives:
A list of online guides and bibliographies developed by Ryerson & Burnham librarians to assist research on a variety of art historical and architectural topics, including provenance research, building history, appraisal and preservation resources, Chicago neighborhood research, and the history of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Digital collection catalogs available freely online. Catalogs offer detailed art historical context, provenance history, and scientific analysis of artworks in the Art Institute of Chicago's collections.
Ryerson & Burnham Libraries
For information on the museum collections, library collections, and library services, please contact Library staff at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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 via our Contact and Application for Access form.