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Art & Architecture: Background Info

This guide offers resources and starting points for researchers in art history, digital scholarship, and visual culture.

Timelines, Dictionaries, and Directories

TIP: When researching an artist, make to use the correct form of the artist's name. There may be variant forms of the artist's name in different sources (especially if you are looking in English-language sources and the name is transliterated from a language with a different alphabet). Also, be aware of nicknames! The Getty's Union List of Artist Names (see below) is a good place to start if you're not sure what name you should use in your search.

Biographical Dictionaries & Encyclopedias

Biographical dictionaries and encyclopedias provide biographical data (such as birth and death dates and lists of works), bibliographies and essays that are authored by experts in the field.

Iconography & Symbolism

Oval Portrait of a Woman

A detailed profile portrait of a woman, depicted against a dark background within a gold-rimmed oval shape. The woman is wearing a light draped garment, a beweled tall gold hat, and neckaces, earrings, and bracelets. She holds a green jade wine cup in her right hand.

Oval portrait of a woman in a Chaghtai hat, c. 1740-50, India, Mughal, 18th century, opaque watercolor and gold on paper, Collection of the Cleveland Museum of Art