In AA/PG's vertical files, approximately 254 file cabinet drawers are devoted to artists. Artists names from the vertical files have been identified and compiled into an online catalog, Artist Files, which includes at least 48,817 artists with new artists added frequently. The Artist Files contain ephemera such as small exhibition brochures; announcements of or invitations to gallery and museum exhibitions; press releases; clippings from newspapers, magazines, or auction catalogs; correspondence; and reproductions of works. These files are a valuable resource for art historical research done on emerging regional and local artists, and often are the only obtainable sources of information on those artists. Although, online art ephemera is increasing, paper art ephemera, such as that in these files, is still heavily used for its dynamic historical and current content. The richness of these files will become even greater as art librarians, artists, galleries, collectors, and art institutions collaborate and cooperate in getting even more ephemera material to the AA/PG Library.
If you see your name on this list of African American artists, you are encouraged to update the material that is included in your folder(s). However, if your name does not appear on this list, check the master Artist Files list, to see if your name appears there and was not capture for the specialized African American file. If your name appears on the master Artist Files, bring to my attention, so corrections and updates may be made to the African American artist files.
This post simply introduces the Artist Files and brings the reader up to date on this African American artists' project. For artists who are not yet included in the Artist Files, a future post will highlight criteria for inclusion. For the time being, direct any questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.