The Bard Graduate Center library has a collection of more than 55,000 monographs, including rare and special collections, more than 500 periodical titles, auction catalogues, trade catalogues, microforms, videos, and Bard Graduate Center’s collection of theses, qualifying papers, and dissertations. These holdings are all searchable in our online library catalog, Folio.
In addition to print resources, the Bard Graduate Center library offers a comprehensive collection of online research databases and a periodicals searching tool, TrueSerials, which connects you directly to the BGC databases.
The library is non-circulating collection spanning all six floors of the Bard Graduate Center building at 38 West 86th Street. With over 8,000 linear feet of shelf space throughout the building, the library houses a significant research collection to support advanced scholarly study of material culture.
The geographic scope of the collection is primarily focused on the United States, Europe, and China but also reflects the focus of the degree programs and the Gallery.
Key subject area represented in our collection are:
- New York and American Material Culture
- Modern Design History
- Early Modern Europe
- History and Theory of Museums
- Comparative Medieval Material Culture (China, Islam, Europe)
- Archaeology, Anthropology, and Material Culture
- Other areas such as those studied in the doctoral program’s field concentrations
The Bard Graduate Center’s Visual Media Resources Department (VMR) maintains the teaching collection of digital images and slides, while also actively building, in collaboration with Bard College’s Visual Resources department, a collection of digital images that are made available to faculty and students via Artstor’s Shared Shelf. In addition, the VMR oversees the BGC Study Collection located in the Object Lab (310) and the Digital Media Lab (DML).
For lists of collections in our catalog, Folio, click on the links below:
Pamphlet Collections Access
To consult items in any of the Pamphlet Collections, ask for assistance at the Library Reference Desk. Items from the collections are consulted in the Reading Room.
The BGC Library Pamphlet Collection
The BGC Library Pamphlet Collection consists of a wide range of materials pertaining to the Bard Graduate Center’s scope of decorative arts, design history, and material culture. These items are deemed relevant to the BGC researcher’s needs, but are not fit for inclusion in the Library’s general collection and are not widely found in other New York City libraries. Items in the Pamphlet Collection include exhibition catalogs, collection catalogs, trade catalogs, guidebooks, instruction guides, postcards, newsletters, event ephemera, offprints, newsletters, annual reports, articles, and clippings.
The BGC Library does not actively seek new items for this collection, but does occasionally add new items acquired via gift or other means. The collection and guide is updated biannually.
Items are arranged by item type, and then by date.
- Box 1 – Collection Catalogs
- Box 2 – Exhibition Catalogs
- Box 3 – Instruction Guides, Postcards & Photographs, Newsletters, Annual Reports, Event Ephemera, Offprints & Articles, Clippings
- Box 4 – Trade Catalogs
- Box 5 – Guidebooks
The Bacharach Pamphlet Collection
The Bacharach Pamphlet Collection consists of materials that the BGC acquired as part of the Bacharach purchase in 2010. These items are generally related to the study of Islamic decorative arts (although other subject material may be included) and deemed relevant to the BGC researcher’s needs, but are not fit for inclusion in the Library’s general collection and are not widely found in other New York City libraries. Items in the Bacharach Pamphlet Collection include ephemera, instruction guides, images, essays, lectures, articles, historical guides, exhibition catalogs, collection catalogs and newsletters.
Items are arranged by item type, and then by date.
- Box 1 – Event Ephemera, Instruction Guides, Images, Lectures, Essays, Offprints, Articles & Clippings, Guidebooks
- Box 2 – Guidebooks, Collection Catalogs, Exhibition Catalogs, Newsletters
Finding AidBacharach Pamphlet Finding Aid (PDF)
The BGC Circus Pamphlet Collection
The BGC Circus Pamphlet Collection consists of some materials consulted in the creation of the exhibition Circus and the City: New York, 1793-2010, on display at the Bard Graduate Center from September 21, 2012 to February 3, 2013. Items in the Circus Pamphlet Collection include souvenir programs, magazines, correspondence and route cards. The Circus Pamphlet is a closed collection as it is purely related to the exhibition held in 2012-2013.
Items are arranged by date.
Titles of the PhD dissertations, MA theses, and Qualifying Papers submitted for BGC degrees appear alphabetically by author in the list below. There are also library catalog records for each work in Folio and in WorldCat.
Access to the BGC theses themselves is available only by appointment at the Bard Graduate Center Library. Photocopying and scanning is not permitted.