24  ·  Survey Results:  Survey Questions and Responses
The majority of our art objects are part of archival collections. We do not have item level description for the bulk of
these items. We believe we have over 500,000 items.
The majority of these holdings consist of the holdings of our graphic arts collection.
This collection has come to us with the closing of the Panama Canal Museum of Seminole, Florida. It includes over
500 number of Panamanian molas (pieces of indigenous textile art), and under 200 paintings or prints. There is also
a large number of decorative objects such as commemorative plates. There are a large number of early 20th century
photographs that are probably more appropriately considered archival materials (or artifacts) than art objects.
Vast majority are slides.
We are considering items like cartoons as art, therefore we have many items.
We collect material that ranges from fine art to the book as object.
We only collect art haphazardly as part of larger collections.
While notable photographs, such as vintage prints of Dorothea Lang’s “Migrant Mother”, may be collected or
considered art, all documentary photographs in our collections are grouped with the historical photographs as artifacts.
Works on paper include approximately 125,000 original cartoon drawings and 10,000 illustration and documentary
drawings. Prints include 100,000 posters; 100,000 artist prints; and 250,000 documentary (historical) prints. For this
survey, all photographs will be covered as “artifacts,” because all photos are handled in the same way.
6. Do you routinely separate art objects from collections of books or archival materials for purposes
of arrangement and description? N=59
Yes 35 59%
No 24 41%
Collection Management Tools for Art Objects
7. What tools are used to arrange and describe your art objects? Check all that apply (including
legacy tools if the records have not been migrated to another tool). N=60
Finding aids including EAD 43 72%
MARC records in an Integrated Library System (library catalog) 35 58%
Database developed and maintained by the library 26 43%
Spreadsheets such as Excel 25 42%
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