Past Meetings

Minutes from Past MACDG Meetings

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

23rd Meeting

Hosted by Indiana University at Bloomington

October 29, 2016

The twenty-third meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Saturday, October 29 at 10:30am at the Art Institute of Chicago. The previous day, the Visual Resources Association-Midwest Chapter held their business meeting and attended a talk by Tassie Gniady on Photogrammetry and 3D Object Creation.

Attendees: Karen Stafford, Art Institute of Chicago; Jacob Esselstrom, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Jasmine Burns, Indiana University; Kendra Werst, Indiana University; Andrew Wang, Indiana University; Julia Kilgore, Indiana University; Vaughan Hennen, Indiana University.

At 10:30 Lori Dekydtspotter (Head of Lilly Library Technical Services, Indiana University, Bloomington) presented on the challenges of cataloging artists’ books and visual materials. Dekydspotter also included some discussion on collecting challenges and opportunities when it comes to these areas of library special collections.

Ruth Tucker (Senior Monographic Cataloger, Wells Library, Indiana University, Bloomington) spoke in great detail about the process of cataloging artists’ books. Some discussion was devoted to the changes in cataloging standards as we move into the future.

At 12:30, Karen Stafford (AIC) welcomed attendees for the business meeting and brief introductions followed.

Stafford noted that meetings in Chicago tend to get the best attendance and should be considered for the fall 2017 meeting. Notre Dame has also expressed interest in hosting. Both venues were met with a positive response.

Stafford reported on the progress of several cataloging projects at the Art Institute of Chicago.
Jasmine Burns (IU Bloomington) reported on the status of the Fine Art Library in Bloomington as it prepares to close down and spoke on the deaccessioning plans currently being put in place for several of its collections.
Indiana University students Andrew Wang, Kendra Werst, Vaughan Hennen, and Julia Kilgore reported on several cataloging projects they were participating in both currently and in recent history.
Jacob Esselstrom (University of Wisconsin- Madison) spoke on cataloging his department’s 380,000 300mm slide collection as well as their current weeding project.

The group discussed several points of interest including each institution’s processes involving shelf-ready books, student catalog training, and the MARC vs non-MARC divide in library science positions.
Jasmine Burns reported that the Fine Arts Library’s books come fully processed and shelf-ready when they arrive at the library. Karen Stafford reported that the AIC has two shelf-ready plans in place and that they check to make sure that the incoming materials’ call numbers do not conflict.
IU’s students expressed some concerns that their cataloging classes did not accurately reflect real-life situations and do not adequately prepare them for many of the more complicated tasks they are asked to catalog in the field. Several wondered if there were cataloging demos or other accessible training materials that would allow them to freely experiment with cataloging standards without adversely affecting real-life projects should they make mistakes (one student cited learning to code through codecademy.com or Lynda.com as a parallel example).
In a follow-up discussion on the presentations on artist books, the group discussed digitization efforts, accessibility, and preservation issues of artist book collections. The group also discussed copyright and ethics concerning the digitization of artist books.

After the MACDG meeting the group proceeded to the Mathers Museum of World Cultures where Ellen Sieber (Chief Curator) discussed the museum’s cataloging process and gave a short talk on the museum’s musical instrument collection. The day concluded with a tour of the Sidney & Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art conducted by Nan Brewer (Curator of Works on Paper). The group was given a tour of the museum’s special exhibition on contemporary Brazilian artist Vik Muniz, the Eskenazi’s new collection of Tiepolo drawings, and highlights from the works on paper collection.

Minutes submitted by Julia Kilgore.

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

22nd Meeting

Hosted by the Art Institute of Chicago

October 16, 2015

The twenty-second meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, October 16 at 10:30am at the Art Institute of Chicago.

Attendees: Michael Donovan, University of Chicago; Bridget Madden, University of Chicago; Rene Aranzamendez, Getty Images; Lauren Boegen, Adler Planetarium; Jen Wolfe, Newberry Library; Gary Strawn, Northwestern University; Nicole Finzer, Northwestern University; Jen Young, Northwestern University; Amy Pinc, Dominican University; Jorie Braunold, Dominican University; Julia Wollrab, Dominican University; Elizabeth Miller, Dominican University; Kathleen Gomey, Dominican University; Kendra Werst, Indiana University; Andrew Wang, Indiana University; Julia Kilgore, Indiana University; Ann Anderson, Chicago Botanic Garden; Andrew Wilk, Princeton University Art Museum; Marsha Stevenson, University of Notre Dame; Jane Darcovich, University of Illinois at Chicago; Sabrina Gorse, John David Mooney Foundation; Doug Litts, Art Institute of Chicago; Anne Champagne, Art Institute of Chicago; Karen Stafford, Art Institute of Chicago; Anna Feuer, Art Institute of Chicago; Bethanne Portala-Dean, Art Institute of Chicago; Cheryl Arvio, Art Institute of Chicago; Aaron Rutt, Art Institute of Chicago; Stephanie Fletcher, Art Institute of Chicago; Carla Owens, Chicago Zoological Society, Brookfield Zoo

Sarah Guernsey (Executive Director of Publishing, Art Institute of Chicago) presented on the Art Institute of Chicago’s Digital Scholarly Catalogues, highlighting the variety of features available in a digital catalogue that are not possible for print catalogues. Information on the OSCI toolkit and Chicago CodeX may be found here.

Gary Strawn (Northwestern University Library) spoke about preparing data for migration to a new ILS, pinpointing both changes to be made to records to better comply with RDA as well as other opportunities to clean up data.

Karen Stafford (AIC) welcomed attendees for the business meeting and brief introductions followed.

Stafford reminded everyone that MACDG has a new website and invited any and all to contribute blog posts.

Indiana University has volunteered to host the next meeting in fall 2016. Elizabeth Miller (Dominican) offered to investigate whether Dominican might be able to host an interim meeting in spring 2016. Both venues were met with a positive response. Agenda items for future meetings can be submitted to Stafford at any time.

There were no reports on cataloging projects.

As a follow-up to Sarah Guernsey’s presentation, Doug Litts (AIC) asked for more information regarding LC’s involvement with AIC’s online catalogs. Anne Champagne (AIC) reported that AIC has asked LC to archive the catalogs; unfortunately, LC does not have the capability to do so. Other repositories, such as Internet Archive, have been suggested but not pursued.

Several attendees announced that their institutions host interns and practicum students. Among them:
the Chicago Zoological Society seeks interns for cataloging, reference, and digital projects;
the University of Chicago Visual Resources Center seeks interns and practicum students for special projects;
Northwestern University Digital Collections needs image catalogers;
Ryerson & Burnham Libraries has internships in technical services, reader services, and archives.

Attendees were asked if their institutions are working with linked data. Litts reported that AIC is not yet, but hopes to in the near future. Linked data will be the responsibility of their Digital Initiatives Librarian, once he/she is hired. Jen Young (Northwestern) reported that Northwestern is in the planning stages of using RDF with visual resources.

There was a brief discussion of how much cataloging support/cataloging content is available through ARLIS membership and its annual conference. ARLIS includes the Cataloging Section and Cataloging Advisory Committee, and conference meetings also include presentations of interest to art catalogers. Stafford reminded the group that ARLIS Midstates is now accepting applications for the Bunce Travel Award, supporting the professional development of a chapter member by partially funding attendance at the annual ARLIS/NA conference

After lunch the group proceeded to the Ryerson & Burnham Libraries to hear from Doug Litts, and Autumn Mather, and Nathaniel Parks about some highlights from the collection, the archives, and digital collections. The day concluded with a gallery talk for Dionysos Unmasked: Ancient Sculpture and Early Prints led by Jeff Nigro (Research Associate, Ancient and Byzantine Art, Art Institute of Chicago).

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

21st Meeting

Hosted by Northwestern University

October 17, 2014

The twenty-first meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, October 17, 2014 at 1:00pm at Northwestern University.

Attendees visited The Death Collection at the Deering Library, the Peer Imaging Group Meeting on born digital workflow, and the Multimedia Learning Center’s fall open house.

Nicole Finzer stepped down as chair, and Karen Stafford assumed the role.

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

20th Meeting

Hosted in conjunction with ARLIS/NA Midstates and VRA Midwest Regional Chapter

September 13-14, 2013

The twentieth meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group was organized in conjunction with ARLIS/NA Midstates and VRA Midwest Regional Chapter at the Art Institute of Chicago, Columbia College, DePaul University, and the Harrington College of Design.

Several projects were presented, including a presentation on copyright by M. Claire Stewart.

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

19th Meeting

Hosted by DePaul University

October 19, 2012

The nineteenth meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, October 19, 2012 at 10:00am at the DePaul University John T. Richardson Library.

Discussion topics included:
The launch of Art.sy, as well as Google Art project, new web-based art collections, social media, and how they impact cataloging; Cataloging items from other departments and how those relationships work in other libraries; DAM initiatives; Other conferences and symposiums of interest not organized by ARLIS-NA or VRA.

A demo of DIL, a Hydra-based system developed by Northwestern University Library.

From 11:30-12:30 there was a tour of the new DePaul Art Museum.

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

18th Meeting

Hosted by the University of Chicago

November 4, 2011

Attendees: Adam Strohm, Northwestern University; Jessica Thomson, Northwestern University; Leigh Gates, Harrington College of Design; Amanda Rybin, University of Chicago; Susan Jane Williams; Kevin Endres, DePaul University; Judith Dartt, University of Chicago; Marsha Stevenson, University of Notre Dame; Michael Donovan, DePaul University; Liz McGoey, DePaul University; Megan Maclean, University of Chicago.

The eighteenth meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, November 4, 2011 at 10:00am at the University of Chicago Cochrane-Woods Art Center.

Susan Jane Williams spoke about the VRA Core 4 website. They are redoing the graphics, adding more examples, and require feedback on things people would like to see on the site, from instructional value to discussion. Examples of 9 categories (Architecture and architectural models; Decorative arts and utilitarian objects; Manuscripts, book arts, and printed matter; Paintings; Performance and installation art; Photographs and film; Prints, drawings, and watercolors; Sculpture; Didactic materials and cultural documentation) were provided.

From 11:30-1:00 there was a tour of the new Joe and Rika Mansueto Library.

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

17th Meeting

Held at the Madlener House/Graham Foundation

November 12, 2010

Attendees: Cheryl Arvio, Art Institute of Chicago; Marsha Stevenson, University of Notre Dame; Nicole Finzer, Northwestern University; Jessica Thomson, Northwestern University; Megan Macken, University of Chicago; Adam Strohm, Northwestern University; Irene Broulis-Nichols, Oak Park Public Library; Thea Nichols, Art Institute of Chicago; Laurie Chipps, Art Institute of Chicago

Slide Retention
U of C is keeping 2/3 of their slides in the Regenstein, and has no plans to dispose of their slide collection.

Northwestern is checking their slides against ARTSTOR when patrons’ request images and disposing of duplicate slides. They have found about 10% of images they search for are available on ARTSTOR.

University of Notre Dame is retaining their slide collection.

University of Notre Dame is also retaining all of their print and online serial subscriptions. This seemed to be the case for most Visual Arts related collections, with Engineering and other disciplines transitioning to online subscriptions and resources only.

Staff Reductions
U of C’s humanities division has had employees leave positions and they are either not being refilled or are very slow to refill these jobs.

VR Librarian is being asked to work outside of her specialized field and take on projects that include the management of such things as audio recordings. Increased inter-departmental collaboration is becoming a necessity.

Both Northwestern and University of Notre Dame have not had any cuts.

At Northwestern, temporary contract positions are being refilled, and the salaries of retiring employees are being saved with plans on applying it to multiple restructured positions in the new future.

Oak Park Public Library, funded by Oak Park property taxes, has not had any cuts, but open positions have been held vacant as long as possible.

In general, the main branch and two subsidiary branches of the OPPL, which boast a 120-person workforce comprised of temporary, part-time and full-time employees, has seen increased use of their buildings, but not necessarily of their materials. They have increased their offerings of computer classes and availability of online resources. Like U of C, they are a member of Swan. Both libraries’ find the system somewhat more complicated then their previous system, and often patrons have difficulty determining what library an item is located at.

Art Institute of Chicago’s Ryerson & Burnham Libraries had several positions eliminated last year. Some staff’s job descriptions have changed and Laurie Chipps has moved into her new role as Serials Librarian.

Shelf Ready Books
OPPL purchases shelf ready media, such as DVDs and Cds. They find that materials are processed faster, but not as completely in comparison to their in house cataloging.

AIC is purchasing shelf ready books from YBP that are supplied cataloged, labeled and bar-coded. They are not pre-searched to check for duplication within their catalog by the vendor.

University of Notre Dame purchases approval books from YBP, but finds their turn around of materials to be slow.

Every Catholic Church in Rome
University of Notre Dame librarian has traveled to Rome to research every Catholic Church building, still standing or previously in existence. She has searched the Vatican Archives but has not found a comprehensive list or book of buildings.

She is searching for input on how to tackle this research project; it was suggested that she check city building permit records, visit the American Academy archives, use Google earth or geocoding to locate existent buildings, and check other architecture libraries and Catholic University archives.

RDA
RDA is scheduled to replace AACR2 in Summer of 2011.

U of C is a test site for implementation of RDA.

Catalogers Desktop will not house the new RDA tool kit.

MARC isn’t necessarily compatible with RDA.

Please refer to Laurie’s pdf’s for information on subscription costs, timeline of role out, and comparisons between AACR2 and RDA records.

Links in Cataloging Records

AIC has embedded links to pdf scans in the 856 field for some exhibitions catalogs in its collection.

University of Notre Dame has one vendor hosted streaming dvd linked to a record for that item. University of Notre Dame plans on doing more of this when the new version of their catalog goes live in the near future.

U of C is trouble shooting implementing digital links embedded within cataloging records.

New MACDG website and Moderator

Geocities has been dissolved so MACDG is looking for someone to volunteer their time to construct a new website. Please contact Laurie about getting all of the files of information formerly housed on the website.

In her new role as Serials Librarian, Laurie is doing less cataloging and is stepping down as MACDG Moderator. Please contact her about assuming leadership of the group if you’re interested. Moderators are responsible for finding meeting host sites, setting meeting agendas and sending out emails to the group.

Thank you to Laurie and the Graham Foundation for a productive and enjoyable meeting!

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

16th Meeting

Hosted by the Northwestern University Art Library

November 13, 2009

The agenda can be found here.

The sixteenth meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, November 13, 2009 at 10:30am at the Northwestern University Art Research Center.

After introductions, several discussion questions were posed:

1. Experience with acquiring artists’ films/videos? Issues of costs, licensing, and limited availability of vendors; use the 506 and 540 fields to define notes relating to rights and restrictions

2. Suggestions for metadata standards for podcasts and other digital learning objects

3. Has anyone had to dispose of slides that are not fit for donation? Is there an ecologically friendly way of disposing them?

4. Has anyone purchased images from vendors and may be able to recommend some that come with good (or even fair) cataloging metadata?

5. Is your library affected by the current economic problems? How are you coping?

Lindsay King, Art Collection Public Services Librarian spoke about the NU Art Library, and attendees had an option to explore the Block Museum of Art.

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

15th Meeting

Hosted by the Art Institute of Chicago

May 29, 2009

Attendees: 
Laurie Chipps, Art Institute of Chicago
; Ruth Nelson, University of Illinois at Chicago
; Jane Darcovich, University of Illinois at Chicago; 
Diana Symons, University of Iowa; 
Shannon Cody, University of Iowa; 
Adam Strohm, University of Chicago
; Marsha Stevens, University of Notre Dame
; Alice Maggio, Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago; 
Thea Nichols, Art Institute of Chicago
; Anne Champagne, Art Institute of Chicago
; Nicole Finzer, Northwestern University
; Jessica Thomson, Northwestern University; 
Leigh Gates, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Kristan Hanson, Art Institute of Chicago
; Stephanie Blue, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Lori Van Deman, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Cheryl Arvio, Art Institute of Chicago
; Marc Gartler, Harrington College of Design
; Laura Haxer, Harrington College of Design; 
Kris Lipkowski, Columbia College; 
Kevin Ford, Columbia College; 
Megan Macken, University of Chicago; 
Amanda Rybin, University of Chicago

The agenda can be found here.

The fifteenth meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, May 29, 2009 at 10:30am at the Art Institute of Chicago.

After introductions, several discussion questions were posed:

  1. How are visual resource librarians using websites like Flickr to highlight their collection? How are they teaching their patrons to use it?

Marsha Stevens of University of Notre Dame discussed the university’s project to upload images of 2,700 lanternslides onto Flickr. At first it was expected that faculty and the university community would assist in identifying and tagging the images, however, many European users came across the collection and contributed the most identification. Problems that were faced we deciding what sort of copyright applied as well as the file size that is allowed (Flickr allows only 20MB with a Pro-account)

  1. Does anyone use an institutional image delivery system or cataloging system that allows users to add their own tags or content? Insights on others that do?

Leigh Gates mentioned several projects that allow for social tagging such as the Steve Project and the SAHARA project. Possible implications for public tagging are the types and relevance of words used as well as authority control. The CONA (Cultural Objects Name Authority) project at the Getty Museum.

Kris Lipkowski of Columbia College discussed users are able to tag their own saved images in their MDID, these tags are not available to the public. A new version of the MDID will allow for contributed notes and tags to be available to the public. The Fedora Commons was also mentioned; Northwestern University uses this repository software and finds that it is quite an advanced system and good for teaching.

  1. What is the current status of the new cataloging rules, RDA (Resource Description and Access)

As it now stands, the current time line of the implementation of RDA is:

Full draft released in PDF Nov. 17, 2008

Comment period on full draft ended Feb. 2, 2009

JSC compiled comments at March 2009 meeting

RDA content finalized 2nd quarter 2009

RDA release, 3rd quarter 2009

Testing by national libraries, 3rd-4th quarters 2009

Analysis and evaluation, 1st-2nd quarters 2010

Implementation(?) 3rd-4th quarters 2010

Subject to change

Many concerns were also discussed such as the lack of a demo (according to the JSC’s website, “We have decided to delay the demo of functionality so that so that its screen mock-ups may more accurately reflect content. We plan to have the demo ready in May”), the appearance of multiple records (both as AARC2 and RDA) as libraries participate in the testing period, and how vendors and ILS’s dealing with the appearance of RDA.

  1. What are people’s experiences with the quality of images in online journals (especially with JSTOR)?

Concern was expressed that many institutions are opting for electronic-only versions of periodicals and doing away with the physical copies of journals in order to save space. This can be a problem since not every image appears in the electronic versions and much beginning/end matter is eliminated (i.e. advertisements).

  1. Does anyone use compact shelving for art books? Are there any problems with size?

Many libraries use compact storage for art books and do not have problems. Books can be divided by size in order to keep the shelves from damaging them.

  1. Are any technical service departments using blogs to communicate with library users?

The VRC at the University of Chicago uses a blog to instruct users on their library system as well as to teach about subject heading usage. The University of Iowa also maintains a blog.

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

14th Meeting

Hosted by the Art Institute of Chicago in conjunction with the joint VRA Midwest and VRA Great Lakes Regional Chapters meeting

November 14, 2008

Attendees: 
Kristan Hanson, Art Institute of Chicago
; Leigh Gates, Art Institute of Chicago
; Jane Darcovich, University of Illinois at Chicago; 
Shannon Cody, University of Iowa
; Jane Goldberg, University of Illinois
; Allan T. Kohl, Minneapolis College of Art & Design; 
Cory Prahl, Minneapolis College of Art & Design; 
Jodie Double, University of Minnesota; 
Megan Macken, University of Chicago; 
Amanda Rybin, University of Chicago; 
Marc Gartler, Harrington College of Design
; Laura Haxer, Harrington College of Design; 
Stephanie Blue, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Kevin Ford, Columbia College
; Marsha Stevenson, University of Notre Dame
; Adam Heet, University of Notre Dame; 
Denise Massa, University of Notre Dame
; Brooke Cox, DePauw University; 
Laurie Chipps, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Lori Van Deman, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Cheryl Arvio, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Sherrie Brittig, University of Dayton; 
Marlene Gordon, University of Michigan-Dearborn; 
Marian Lambers, College for Creative Studies; 
Lorrie McAllister, Ohio State University
; Elizabeth Meyer, University of Cincinnati; 
Sue Morris, Michigan State University; 
Meghan Musolff, University of Michigan; 
Alex Nichols, Michigan State University
; Astrid R. Otey, Miami University; 
Carole Pawloski, Eastern Michigan University; 
Joseph Romano, Oberlin College; 
Kari Smith, University of Michigan

The agenda can be found here.

The fourteenth meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, November 14, 2008 at 9:45 am at the Art Institute of Chicago, with welcome and introductions led by Jodie Double, Chair, VRA Midwest Regional Chapter and Marlene Gordon, Chair, Great Lakes Regional Chapter.

The meeting opened with a Photoshop workshop led by Cory Prahl. Tailored to the needs of visual resources professionals, the workshop focused on scanning, adustment/levels, and perspective changes. An illustrated guide to this workshop will likely be made available on the VRA website.

Next attendees divided into groups for the VRA chapter meetings.

To learn more about the VRA Midwest Regional Chapter or the VRA Great Lakes Regional Chapter click here.

After lunch Kari Smith discussed a workshop that was given at the VRA 26th Annual Conference in San Diego, California. Entitled “Seeking the Right Path for Visual Resources Users,” the workshop provided information about a visual resources decision tree that has been developed at Cornell University. An overview of the workshop can be viewed at the VRA 26th Annual Conference website. The workshop will be offered at the upcoming annual Art Libraries Society of North America (ARLIS/NA) conference in Indianapolis, Indiana. See the ARLIS/NA conference website for more information.

Next Allan T. Kohl, President, VRA offered a “Stump the Prez” session to give VRA members the opportunity to ask questions about the association. There was also a discussion about Cataloging Cultural Objects (CCO) led by Jodie Double and Meghan Musolff. “The CCO is a data content standards initiative for the cultural heritage community.” To learn more visit the CCO website.

The meeting concluded with a tour of the Fashion Resource Center (FRC) at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Led by Gillion Carrara, Director, FRC the tour focused on issues of collection development and management as well as student and public access. “The Fashion Resource Center maintains a unique hands-on collection of late twentieth and twenty-first century designer garments and accessories representative of extreme innovation.” For more information see the Fashion Resource Center website.

Notes by KH

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

13th Meeting

Hosted by the University of Notre Dame

June 13, 2008

Attendees:
Alice Maggio, Illinois Institute of Art, Chicago; 
Tracy Bergstrom, University of Notre Dame; 
Marsha Stevenson, University of Notre Dame; 
Mary McKeown, University of Notre Dame
; Jennifer Brcka, University of Notre Dame; 
Meghan Musolff, University of Michigan; 
Tom Hartmann, Chicago
; Kristan Hanson, Art Institute of Chicago

The agenda for this meeting can be found here.

The thirteenth meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, June 13, 2008 at 1:30 pm at the University of Notre Dame, with welcome and introductions by those in attendance.

After introductions Marsha Stevenson provided an update about the University of Notre Dame’s lanternslide digitization project, in which images have been posted on Flickr so that users can tag them. Most of the lanternslides date between 1910 and 1914 and depict architectural sites with little or no identifying information. Marsha continues to receive information from Flickr users about the images. To date the image group has had more than 25,000 views.

For more information see the June 2007 minutes. Or visit the nd_architecture_library space on Flickr to view the comments.

Next attendees discussed some highlights of the national Art Libraries Society of North America (ARLIS/NA) and Visual Resources Association (VRA) conferences. Meghan Musolff helped organize a session about social tagging, “Free Association: Social Tagging in Online Collections” for the annual VRA conference in San Diego, California. The VRA list serve continues an active discussion about this and other issues.

VRA 26th Annual Conference

At the conference the panel discussed the STEVE Project as well as other social tagging projects, which have shown how little social tags appear in formal cataloging records. Meghan reported that most conference attendees did not have a tagging utility at their institutions. The Google Image Labeler was discussed at the ARLIS/NA conference. The labeler randomly pairs Google users who then label images for two-minute sessions. Each pair of users tries to match image tags while avoiding tags that have already been applied. The game is designed to help improve Google image retrieval.

Alice Maggio asked attendees how they catalog comic books and graphic novels. In the course of the discussion a helpful resource was mentioned, “Strategies for Developing a Graphic Novel/Comic Book Collection” published in comic book format in Art Documentation in 2007.

Next attendees discussed whether there is an increasing trend in hiring copy catalog paraprofessionals and how this shapes the field. At Notre Dame University the staff was originally divided between original catalogers and copy catalogers, but it has been restructured. The new team structure pairs an original cataloger with a copy cataloger in order to help the copy cataloger develop language and/or subject expertise. In visual resources it is common to hire temporary employees or student workers to assist with cataloging. It was suggested that this practice might be avoided if visual resource collections partnered with library school programs to provide project opportunities for students.

Kristan Hanson asked how other institutions maintain relationships with patrons and keep them informed about new resources. Some schools organize brown bag technology lunches to attract students and faculty, while others have added a “browse new acquisitions” feature to their catalogs, send out selective emails, or photocopy book covers for distribution in faculty mailboxes.

Next Marsha Stevenson and Jennifer Brcka discussed the University of Notre Dame’s procedures for cataloging a departmental collection of books in Rome, Italy. The collection was developed to support the University of Notre Dame’s architecture program, which includes study abroad in Rome. During the year long program students complete drawing assignments and learn measured drawings skills. The University of Notre Dame maintains a departmental reading room that includes approximately 3,000 volumes, of which roughly 300 items are cataloged. Copy is available for the bulk of the collection. Jennifer wrote procedures for cataloging items in the collection so that a student worker in Rome could begin matching the items to records in WorldCat. Now the librarians are developing procedures for those items without available copy. Collection development for the Rome reading room continues at the University of Notre Dame.

The discussion was followed by an architectural tour of the campus.

Notes by KH

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

12th Meeting

Hosted by the University of Chicago

March 7, 2008

Attendees:
Alice Maggio, Illinois Institute of Art, Chicago
; Tracy Bergstrom, University of Notre Dame
; Lindsay Bosch, Art Institute of Chicago
; Nancy Spiegel, University of Chicago; 
Tod Olson, University of Chicago
; Megan Macken, University of Chicago
; Lori Van Deman, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Laurie Chipps, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Thea Nichols, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Gretchen Witthuhn, University of Chicago
; Kristan Hanson, Art Institute of Chicago
; Kris Lipkowksi, Columbia College

The agenda for this meeting can be found here.

The twelfth meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, March 7, 2008 at 10:00 am at the Department of Art History, University of Chicago, with welcome and introductions by those in attendance.

After introductions there was one announcement: Marsha Stevenson will host our spring meeting at the University of Notre Dame. The tentative date for the meeting is Friday, May 16. The meeting can be moved to a later date in order to accommodate more people. Please watch for emails regarding this meeting!

After the announcement Megan Macken gave a presentation about Next Generation Catalogs/OPACs in preparation for her participation in the session “What’s Hot and What’s Not” at the upcoming ARLIS/NA Conference in Denver, Colorado. She emphasized how patrons of art libraries (often visual learners) could benefit from these systems, and how art librarians who are sensitive to their patrons’ needs can contribute to the development of cataloging systems at their own institutions. For more information about Next Generation Catalogs visit MLibrary2.0. OPACs attempt to provide “one stop shopping” with user friendly search features. For example North Carolina State University’s catalog provides simultaneous search and browsing features, while Duke University’s Digital Collections catalog allows users to search for books, images, and other materials at the same time. The University of Chicago’s Lens catalog has a word cloud feature that provides users with suggestions for other potentially useful searches. Although the Lens catalog does not allow for scrolling through alphabetical lists like a traditional catalog it does provide features that address the limitation of the Library of Congress subject headings. The Lens catalog is also able to collapse records for journals with title changes or books with multiple versions. The Tate Museums’ collection database allows users to view an interactive subject hierarchy for each object record. There was some discussion about how the word cloud and other search more features might be more helpful to users conducting broad searches, especially students, than to more sophisticated users conducting specialized searches. There was also discussion about the usefulness and types of subject terms used for visual resources cataloging.

Megan’s presentation included demonstrations of the following catalogs:

Endeca: NCSU Libraries

Duke Digital Collections

Lens, University of Chicago

VuFind: Home (A library search portal for academic OPACs)

Rotch Visual Collections

Tate Collection

British Library – Google Search

Library of Congress Online Catalogs

William Mitchell College of Law

Hennepin County Library Catalog

SFSU LibraryThing

Before and After | LibraryThing for Libraries

NGC4Lib

After Megan’s presentation the group attended a tour of the exhibition “Romance and Chess: A Tale of Two Manuscripts Reunited” by Aden Kumler at the Special Collections Research Center at Regenstein Library. For more information about the exhibition and to view the digitized manuscripts visit Rose & Chess. The group also attended a presentation given by Judith Dartt, Digital Specialist, and Catherine Uecker, Rare Books Manager, of the Special Collections Research Center at Regenstein Library. Their presentation focused on metadata practices for cataloging the digital codex manuscript collections (including the Rose and Chess manuscripts) and they also addressed ways that librarians work to make rare books accessible.

Notes by KH

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

11th Meeting

Hosted by the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection

November 2, 2007

Attendees:
Alice Maggio, Illinois Institute of Art, Chicago; 
Marc Gartler, Harrington College of Design
; Jane Darcovich, University of Illinois at Chicago; 
Tom Hartmann, Chicago
; Thea Nichols, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Sue Reyna, Oak Park; 
Laurie Chipps, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Lori Van Deman, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Bethane Portola, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Cheryl Arvio, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Lindsay Bosch, Art Institute of Chicago
; Kristan Hanson, Art Institute of Chicago
; Kris Lipkowksi, Columbia College
; Susannah Kite Strang, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
; Kerri Willette, School of the Art Institute of Chicago; 
Nathaniel Feis, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
; Doro Boehme, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
; Sylvia Choi, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
; Leigh Gates, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Anne Champagne, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Megan Macken, University of Chicago

The agenda for this meeting can be found here.

The eleventh meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, November 2, 2007 at 10:30 am at the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with welcome and introductions by those in attendance.

After introductions three discussion questions were posed to the group.

  1. Sue Reyna asked whether catalogers have reference duties and how such duties impact cataloging productivity. Several attendees responded that they do have reference duties and that working reference does not have a negative impact on their productivity. Many catalogers who have reference duties felt that the process of helping patrons find materials has informed their cataloging decisions. Some catalogers, who have recently been on the job market, stated that cataloging positions for which they applied often required reference work. One cataloger was surprised to find that more libraries have not embraced this practice.
  2. Alice Maggio asked what types of training or formal manuals catalogers provide for new hires. One cataloger replied that she created a training manual that she makes available to new hires via the intranet that can be easily adapted and edited as needed. One cataloger mentioned that she often refers to a training guide when cataloging nonstandard materials and that it is really useful to have examples to model. Some web resources were suggested including OCLC’s online tutorials, and university websites included those hosted by Princeton University, University of Colorado and University of California. It was also suggested that digital asset management vendors can provide good user manuals as well as training and technical support.
  3. Kristan Hanson asked what types of training other catalogers provide for their patrons (especially visual resource librarians) and whether anyone has created an interactive user guide that is available to their patrons online. One attendee replied that there are digital resources available to staff at Columbia College through the Columbia College library website. Another attendee responded that at her university a faculty guide is offered in a PDF format in addition to a LUNA blog for users. In addition to this one-on-one training is provided that is customized to each users needs.

After the three discussion questions were posed the group considered Marsha Stevenson’s invitation to host a MACDG meeting at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana. Many attendees were enthusiastic about attending a meeting at the University of Notre Dame and they stated that a two-hour train ride from the Loop (downtown Chicago) to South Bend would not deter them from attending. A consensus was reached that we should arrange to have a meeting at the University of Notre Dame in the spring if possible.

Doro Boehme the Special Collections Librarian at the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection introduced herself and provided a brief description of the artists’ book collection. The collection includes roughly 4,500 cataloged items. The objects in the collection that remain to be cataloged include ephemera and mail art. Approximately 300 new works are accessioned each year. The special collection is open to the public and is typically accessed by hundreds of visitors each semester. Researchers, scholars, instructors and students make up the bulk of the collection’s users. One unique aspect of the collection is that patrons are allowed to handle the artists’ books and other objects in the collection after a thorough hand washing.

After summarizing the collection Doro Boehme introduced Kerri Willette the Digital Resources Librarian at the Flaxman Library. Kerri Willette has been working with other librarians to develop a web accessible interface for the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection using Content DM. Kerri discussed the process of developing the web interface and the ongoing challenges of repurposing data to make the collection accessible through multiple databases. When the project began there was a complicated set of existing data that had been created using two cataloging formats. A local database had been created for the collection that was only accessible from computers within the collection. Cataloging practices for this database were not well documented. In addition to the local database roughly 1,200 MARC records were also created for contribution to CARLI and the Flaxman Library’s Voyager catalog. The practice of creating two records for each item was not sustainable for the growing collection.

Kerri and the other librarians began the project of data cleanup by developing multiple controlled vocabularies. Many terms were found in AAT or other controlled lists. In some cases local terms were created. Cleanup also included authority work for authors’ names.

The Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection received funding to host the collection locally; this has allowed the librarians to have greater control over the creation of data display and the design of the interface. Ultimately the web interface will allow users to search across multiple collections hosted by the Flaxman Library and the Ryerson and Burnham Library.

Susannah Kite Strang a special projects cataloger for the Joan Flash Artists’ Book Collection spoke about her current project creating entries for artists’ books for an online database hosted by the University of Virginia. The cataloging template was designed for works in the traditional codex format. Susannah has been working on cataloging more unusual objects that may challenge the flexibility of the cataloging schema. In addition to work, object and image records the database hosted by the University of Virginia includes images of each page of each book. The database has been designed for scholarly use and it allows artists to contribute information pertaining to their works.

Kerri Willette explained that new cataloging procedures were developed for the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection. Records are created using a modified Dublin Core format. Existing MARC records are being converted to a Dublin Core format. Kerri and the other librarians are interested to learn how existing data might be harvested and repurposed so that each object in the collection is cataloged one time. For example OCLC has been harvesting MARC records to put them into World Cat that are then added to CARLI. This process has been an experiment, as the OCLC script was not designed for books but rather for images and museum objects.

The goal of the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection web interface is to share the collection and to make it accessible to people who are not able to visit the collections in person. Images added to the database are limited to the covers of works because of copyright issues and because the images are primarily for discovery so that patrons view objects in the collection in person.

After a brief period for questions about the project attendees were invited to look at and handle objects in the collection. The meeting was adjourned and many attendees went to lunch.

Notes by KH

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

10th Meeting

Hosted by the Harrington College of Design, Library

June 15, 2007

Attendees:
 Tom Hartmann, Harrington College; 
Sue Reyna, Oak Park; 
Megan Macken, University of Chicago
; Alice Maggio, Illinois Institute of Art
; Jane Darcovich, University of Illinois at Chicago; 
Kris Lipkowksi, Columbia College; 
Marsha Stevenson, University of Notre Dame
; Cheryl Hill, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Pam Cipkowski, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Kristan Hanson, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Leslie Kott Wakeford, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Cheryl Arvio, Art Institute of Chicago

The agenda for this meeting can be found here.

The tenth meeting of Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, June 15, 2007 at 10:50 am in Room 209 of Harrington College of Design with welcome and introductions by those in attendance.

The discussion began at about 10:50 am with a presentation by Marsha Stevenson from the University of Notre Dame. Marsha spoke to the group about her ongoing lantern slide project. Marsha explained that during the summer when the library has slowed down they began working on their lantern slide collection because the lack of copyright issues. After conservation and cleaning the library had 3000 out of 4000 slides that were good candidates for imaging, and cataloging. There is no image cataloging librarian at Notre Dame’s Architecture library so all Marsha had was what was on the slide labels, and that was very little. Due to the lack of information they couldn’t provide full descriptive cataloging to prepare proper records for Digitool. To provide some access to these slides they decided to put them on Flickr.

Flickr offered Marsha and Notre Dame a chance to provide an unlimited amount of images with up to 75 tags each for 2 years at only 48 dollars. Using Flickr Marsha had an opportunity to provide access to the ND architecture community. The downside was that they couldn’t put high-resolution images on Flickr due to size restrictions. Marsha starting putting images on Flickr but didn’t expect any responses until the fall when the students and faculty came back.

She was surprised to find that waiting until fall wasn’t necessary. Instead she found that entire communities of people were looking and providing additional information about the images. Different Flickr groups starting adding her lantern slide images, such as a group dedicated to the city of Bern adding images of Bern’s buildings to their group. Beyond the groups she was also very surprised to find people providing more information for the images. Under the comments section of the individual images people were beginning to leave notes with more descriptive information, or sometimes spelling or other corrections so that additional tags could be added or edited. There are even some images that have been geo tagged so that you can see the location of the building on a map. Some people were even able to offer historical information.

Marsha showed us several of these comments and discussed her strategy in dealing with the comments received and how she has decided to trust the community and add tags as needed. The time it would take to research these images is just overwhelming, but she was also pleased to announce that the Architecture Department at Notre Dame is providing Graduate student assistance to help research these images.

Please visit the nd_architecture_library space on Flickr to view the comments, and contact Marsha if you have additional questions.

After Marsha’s great presentation we moved on to some other items on the agenda. The Illinois institute of Art is also using vendor records to help catalog, but it takes just as long to delete the items not needed in vendor records as it does to just type in what you need yourself. Like the Art Institute they consider these minimal records pretty much as original cataloging. There haven’t been any big changes noticed yet from the OCLC/RLIN merger, although most of the people in the room use OCLC and expect that hopefully soon there will be more copy records coming from former RLIN members. The general feeling on RDA in the room was one of disappointment and an overall feeling of “we will see it if and when it happens.” A comment was made by a discussion group member that the creators of RDA are holding back RDA out of fear that it will be obsolete or not useful, but the longer they hold it back and the more broad it gets the more obsolete and less useful it will. That seemed to sum up the group’s expectations of RDA.

Also there has been some interest in starting a MACDG blog, I will look into this and see how plausible, used it will be and get back to the group. If you want to volunteer to set this up let Cheryl Hill know

Before we broke for Lunch Meghan Macken had an announcement: For the ARLIS/NA conference in Denver in 2008 she is part of team working on a session concerning Next Generation OPACS in libraries. She is looking for speakers for the session and they have until July to add them. If anyone knows anyone who is working with Next Gen OPACs please contact Meghan. The information for the session and Meghan’s contact information can be found on the ARLISnap website by clicking on “Join the discussion.”

ARLISnap

The next meeting of the MACDG will be in October 2007. I am looking for a location to host, possibly outside of Chicago. Please contact Kristan Hanson if you can host.

Notes by MS and CH

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

9th Meeting

Hosted by the Art Institute of Chicago, Ryerson and Burnham Libraries

February 23, 2007

Attendees:
Tom Hartmann, Harrington College
; Sue Reyna, Oak Park
; Megan Macken, University of Chicago
; Alice Maggio, Illinois Institute of Art; 
Judith Gustafson, College of DuPage
; Cheryl Hill, Art Institute of Chicago
; Thea Nichols, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Armando Pequeno, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Pam Cipkowski, Art Institute of Chicago
; Kristan Hanson, Art Institute of Chicago
; Leigh Gates, Art Institute of Chicago
; Anne Champagne, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Leslie Kott Wakeford, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Cheryl Arvio, Art Institute of Chicago

The agenda for this meeting can be found here.

The ninth meeting of Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, Feburary 23, 2007 at 10:40 am in the Trustees Room of the Art Institute of Chicago with welcomes and introductions by those in attendance.

The discussion began at about 10:40 am with the topic of Folksomonies or Social Tagging. We discussed how tagging could effect library catalogs. It was mentioned that Ann Arbor District Library allows patrons to add tags to their catalog, and is used for visual images, such as on the Flicker website. We then discussed the advantages and disadvantages of social tagging, and any implications this could have for catalogers.

Next we briefly discussed some problems an attendee was having with their voyager system and asked if anyone else had experience with the issue. A few of those in attendance did have some experience with Voyager, but no one was very sure on the specific issue. It was suggested the question be posted on Autocat.

Artists’ books was the next topic. A presentation from the Flaxman library on their Joan Flash Artists book collection was suggested for a future meeting. We then discussed the difficulty in defining an Artist’s book, and that different places handled them very differently. Such as the Museum of Modern Art’s Artists book collection.

The next issue was the issue of image protection and copyright, which was discussed at some length. Some areas that were touched on included the use of materials for fair use in an educational collection, the problems of copyright with integrating images, and how various places protect themselves with statements users must sign. Another possible presentation was suggested for a future meeting regarding the University of Chicago scholar, Susan Bielstein, who writes on the use of Images in Art History scholarship, and how image protection issues are hindering publication.

A brief discussion on several items followed until about 12:15 when we broke for lunch. These topics included; error rates and checking mistakes, the Art Institutes recent switch from Dewey to LC, and the buildings as Subject authority rather than Name authority issue.

The Next meeting of the MACDG will be in June 2007. I am looking for a location to host, and it was suggested that someplace outside of Chicago might want to Host. Please Contact Cheryl Hill if you can host.

Notes by Cheryl Hill

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

8th Meeting

Hosted by the Special Collections of the Regenstein Library at the University of Chicago

January 30, 2004

Attendees:
Cheryl Arvio, Art Institute of Chicago
; Angela Falsey, Art Institute of Chicago
; Nathaniel Feis, Art Institute of Chicago; 
Tom Hartmann, Harrington College of Design
; Ben Kessler, University of Chicago; 
Karen Johnson, Judson College
; Alice Maggio, Illinois Institute of Art; 
Dennis McGuire, Columbia College
; April Trentham, Art Institute of Chicago
; Jen Wolfe, student, University of Washington

The eighth meeting of Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, January 30, 2004 at the Special Collections of the Regenstein Library at the University of Chicago with welcomes and introductions by those in attendance.

Announcement:  The meeting began with Tom Hartmann announcing that Harrington
Institute of Interior Design has changed its name to the Harrington College of Design and moved to the following address:

Harrington College of Design, 
200 W. Madison,
Design Library, 3rd floor
, Chicago, IL  60606
. 
The library is open to everyone, generally 8 am- 9 pm (Fridays and Saturdays until 4:00). 
Material is not loaned out, except to students and faculty/staff. The library is part of OCLC, but not in ILLINET.

Topic: How do you handle changes in LCSH subject headings? Do you change retrospectively, use new heading in new books only, or something else?

 The scope note revisions made to Clothing and dress and Costume were given as examples.  Illinois Institute of Art has a large fashion collection and this change means reclassing a lot of material. At Columbia, they are responsible to a consortium and must follow the changes.

Topic: Is anyone using the 22nd ed. of Dewey?

 Only the Art Institute is making the switch to the latest edition of Dewey. The process by which Dewey is updated was discussed, as was the merits of Dewey vs. LC classification. The necessity of classification in light of online catalogs was also discussed.

Topic: Classing artists by century, nationality?

 In Dewey, 709.04, for 20th century artists, is divided by movements and some media, while 709.05 for 21st century is not. The University of Chicago’s visual resources are arranged by artist, by nationality before 1800 and alphabetically thereafter. At Columbia the decision is made by asking: in what century will the majority of the artist’s work be completed?

The next MACDG meeting is tentatively planned for June 2004. Any librarians interested in hosting this meeting should contact Nathaniel Feis at the Art Institute of Chicago (nfeis@artic.edu or 312-443-3526).

Notes by Angela Falsey
, January 30, 2004

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

7th Meeting

Hosted by the Cranbrook Academy of Art Library

October 17, 2003

Attendees:
 Angela Falsey, Art Institute of Chicago
; Nathaniel Feis, Art Institute of Chicago
; Alba Fernandez, Indianapolis Museum of Art
; Nicole Finzer, student, Indiana University
; Terry Kerby, University of Michigan; 
Marian Lambers, College for Creative Studies
; Nancy Steffes, College for Creative Studies
; Beth Walker, College for Creative Studies

The seventh meeting of the Midwest Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, October 17, 2003 at the Library of the Cranbrook Academy of Art with welcomes and introductions by those in attendance.

Topic: Do you catalog comic books as serials or monographs?
At Ryerson, if a series of comic books has a single title, issue numbers, or other characteristics of a serial, it is cataloged as a serial. Those with individual titles are cataloged as monographs. Checking the catalogs of other libraries with extensive holdings of comics was suggested. It was also mentioned that RLIN has a lot of copy for comics; checking OCLC’s Worldcat was also suggested.

Topic: Do you catalog annual (biennial, triennial) exhibition catalogs as serials or monographs?
At Ryerson, they are cataloged as monographs if they are individually titled, feature named curators, or if they are catalogs from a small part of a larger exhibition. If the catalogs have one title, obvious numbering, and no individual distinguishing features, they are cataloged as serials. At the Indianapolis Museum of Art, they are all cataloged as monographs.

Topic: Do you have an online catalog or a database for your visual library? The University of Michigan and the College for Creative Studies both have databases.

Topic: Do faculty/curators try to dictate the location or classification of your collection’s resources (images or books)? The difference between cataloging print and visual collections was discussed. The cataloging of print collections differs from visual collections in that print collection cataloging generally follows more standards. Visual collection classification systems are usually homegrown. Although many of those in attendance hear these requests for different classification, and all keep the audience in mind when classing items, visual resource libraries are in a better position to accommodate patrons.

Topic: Are your slide collections digitizing?

The University of Michigan is digitizing images and migrating records from an 18-year-old in-house database to a digital asset management system. The entire collection won’t be digitized, but they currently have about 250,000 records. ARTstor has expressed an interest in their digital image collection, but there are copyright issues to be resolved. The College for Creative Studies is looking into embedding images into their OPAC with Innovative Interfaces. It was noted that Saskia is now only offering digital photos, and that Kodak will be discontinuing its projectors. The Madison Digital Image Database was recommended.

Topic: Is anyone switching from DDC 21 to 22? Ryerson Library is presently still using DDC 21. Indianapolis Museum of Art still uses an older edition of Dewey for consistency’s sake. No one else present is using Dewey. The merits and difficulties of Dewey and LC classification systems were discussed briefly.

Topic: Subject headings: how do you handle 20th-21st century art? University of Michigan has an “international file” for artists after 1945. The College for Creative Studies did away with geographic divisions for artists for 20th century on. University of Michigan does not use chronological subdivisions. Classing can almost be a question of personal preference; subject headings can assure access, especially in closed stack libraries. The difficulties of cataloging works on non-Western or “non-traditional” arts were briefly discussed.

The next MACDG meeting is tentatively planned for January 2004. Any librarians interested in hosting this meeting should contact Nathaniel Feis at the Art Institute of Chicago (nfeis@artic.edu or 312-443-3526).

Notes by Angela Falsey
, 10/17/03

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group


6th Meeting

Hosted by the MacLean Visual Resources Center, Ryerson and Burnham Libraries, the Art Institute of Chicago

June 6, 2003

Attendees: Sara Carter, prospective art-librarian/student; Kathy Evans, Purdue University; Nathaniel Feis, Art Institute of Chicago; Leigh Gates, Art Institute of Chicago; Shu Yong Jiang, Art Institute of Chicago; Ben Kessler, University of Chicago; Alma Koppedraijer, Art Institute of Chicago; Cheryl Mainard, Art Institute of Chicago; Lauren Noel, Columbia College; Armando Pequeno, Art Institute of Chicago; Maria Sheehan, Harrington Institute; April Trentham, Art Institute of Chicago

After an interesting and informative presentation by Doro Boehme, Special Collections Librarian, Sylvia Choi, Catalog Librarian, and Fred Hillbruner, Head of Technical Services concerning the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book collection books at the John M. Flaxman Library, the School of the Art Institute and special cataloging issues raised by artists’ books, we proceeded to our regular meeting.

The sixth meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, June 6, 2003 at the MacLean Visual Resources Center, Ryerson and Burnham Libraries, the Art Institute of Chicago with welcomes and introductions by those in attendance.

We started off by continuing on the topic of artists’ books. Most of those collections represented at the meeting do not have significant artist book collections, though these sorts of items are added occasionally. Columbia College has a loose definition of artists’ books. When such items are cataloged, the subject heading “Artists’ books” is assigned, but no access is added for the sorts of materials and processes which were utilized to create the book in question. But, this sort of detailed access, which is useful when dealing with a collection having as broad a scope as the Joan Flasch collection, may not be relevant for a library that only has a few artists’ books.

It was mentioned that there is no published guide dealing with the cataloging of artists’ books, nor is there any sort of workshop or class on the same topic of which anyone present is aware. There are, however, classes in cataloging realia and these practices combined with those of regular bibliographic cataloging, might help in cataloging artists’ books. It was suggested that a class in cataloging artists’ books might be the sort of thing that the MACDG could sponsor at some future date.

On the topic of library projects — particularly summer projects — it was noted that summer is a time when a library can accomplish many of the larger projects that can not be taken care of at other times of the year when the library is busier. Many libraries use this time for inventory or similar projects. The Ryerson Library’s circulation department is moving to the Innovative Interfaces, Inc.’s Millennium module in the near future. Also, Ryerson Library is continuing long term projects such as re-classing older titles. The MacLean Visual Resources Center is working on image presentation and reviewing cataloging. They are attempting to meet challenges presented by attempting to adapt their pre-existing cataloging into the models created by vendors. This is especially difficult in visual collections. The Art Department at Purdue University has begun documenting lectures and other events at the University on video and adding these videos to the collection. This raises many issues beyond cataloging, such as preservation of these materials for the future since these are the original recordings. Since this is a new area for them, they are still establishing their preactices.

With that the conversation segued into a discussion of online catalogs and how the catalogs are used. The Slide Library at Purdue University uses Filemaker as a database, as does the University of Chicago. At the University of Chicago, however, the images are linked directly to the catalog records so that both image and record can be pulled up simultaneously. It was mentioned that is more difficult for a smaller institution or department to set-up this sort of synergetic catalog because it is difficult to find the technical and administrative support that is needed to get this sort of project underway.

The next meeting will likely be sometime in October. The time and place have not yet been set. Any librarians interested in hosting future meetings should contact Nathaniel Feis at the Art Institute of Chicago (nfeis@artic.edu or 312-443-3526).

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

5th Meeting

Hosted by the Design Library of the Harrington Institute of Interior Design

January 24, 2003

Attendees: Anne Champagne, Art Institute of Chicago; Michael Donovan, Art Institute of Chicago; Angela Falsey, Art Institute of Chicago; Nathaniel Feis, Art Institute of Chicago; Leigh Gates, Art Institute of Chicago; Tom Hartmann, Harrington Institute; Shu Yong Jiang, Art Institute of Chicago; Karen Johnson, Judson College; Dennis McGuire, Columbia College; Alice Maggio, Dominican University; Cheryl Mainard, Art Institute of Chicago; Julie Marchenko, Northwestern University; Lauren Noel, Columbia College; Amy Trendler, Art Institute of Chicago; April Trentham, Art Institute of Chicago

The fifth meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday, January 24, 2003 at the Design Library of the Harrington Institute of Interior Design with welcomes and introductions by those in attendance.

  1. Topic: When do you place copy work in the collection and when do you purchase slides?

The current practice at Judson College is to check with their three main distributors and see if they have an image, to purchase it and let the copy work go. If the image can not by easily purchased, the copy work is entered into the catalog, labeled, and moved to the permanent collection.

It was suggested that the amount of slides you buy be based on your budget. Judson College purchases available slides through a limited number of distributors. For the rest, Karen Johnson puts copy work into their regular collection. The Art Institute of Chicago and Columbia slide libraries also utilize this system.

  1. Topic: How do you class digital photograph “albums” so that they are not lost amongst other photography collections? The word “albums” refers to monographs of mostly, if not all, photographic images.

At the Harrington Institute some patrons have requested books containing only digital photography. The concern was whether the library should separate digital photography from other photography books. It was suggested to use subject headings differentiating the books, for example a digital photography heading rather than creating a separate section for digital photography. A separate location may only be helpful for a small number of patrons and not in the library�s best interest for future acquisitions, especially as the number of monographs containing digital photography increases. For the majority of patrons interested in the subject matter being photographed, rather than the specific photographic process, separate locations would not be beneficial.

  1. Topic: Effects of the AACR2 revisions on cataloging

Everyone appears to have adjusted to the revisions; no complaints or comments were voiced.

  1. Topic: Vernacular vs. English place names

The Getty Thesaurus for Place Names came out with a new edition recently. Both English and vernacular names were listed. Which do (slide) libraries and patrons prefer? LC prefers the English version, but includes vernacular forms as references in its authority records. Also there are discrepancies within some of LC headings, for example a particular building with a non-English name is kept in its vernacular form and then in parenthesis the English form of the place name is given. Northwestern University is trying to consistently use English names for its slide library. For extinct localities the ancient name is preferred by the Art Institute and Northwestern. Depending, however, on whether or not the location in question falls within a current jurisdiction. LC uses the current name for the locality. Columbia uses the English form for place names, but keeps the actual building names in the vernacular tongue. For specific art works, Dennis McGuire uses the original language of the title over the translated English version, but only if that title is present in the work being catalogued. The Art Institute’s slide library labels slides with both the original and English translated title.

  1. Topic: Searching for slides within the general catalog

The problem of attempting to catalog items in such a way that certain information will be available to instructors, but will not cause confusion for students searching the catalog was discussed. This is complicated by the need to catalog slides within a system that integrates many forms of media. The solution seems to be to get the students to perform limited searchs.

  1. Topic: Non-MARC records

Several librarians discussed the problems with mapping non-MARC records from a local database into MARC format. Northwestern successfully completed this project. Columbia experienced some problems when they mapped records from non-MARC into MARC. For example, one multi-lined 500 note was separated into individual 500 notes for each line. Since Judson College currently has a small collection, Karen Johnson wondered if it would be better to attempt the switch to a MARC formatted system soon so that it will be easier to address the problems that come up as a result of the switch.

Amy Trendler will be mediating the session at Art Libraries Society of North America conference in Baltimore. The session — The Next Generation of Catalogers: Issues in Education and Training — will be held on Monday, March 24,10-11:30 am.

As is the custom, there will not be a spring quarterly meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group because of the ARLIS and Visual Resources Association conferences. The next MACDG meeting will be held in May or June of 2003. Any librarians interested in hosting this meeting should contact Nathaniel Feis at the Art Institute of Chicago (nfeis@artic.edu or 312-443-3526).

The meeting was followed by a tour of the Design Library.

Notes by April Trentham

1/24/03

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

4th Meeting

Hosted by the Cleveland Museum of Art

October 11, 2002

Attendees: Lizette Benzing, Oberlin College; Anne Champagne, Art Institute of Chicago; Leigh Gates, Art Institute of Chicago; Christopher Handy, Cleveland Museum of Art; Hyosoo Lee, Cleveland Institute of Art; Stacie Murry, Cleveland Museum of Art; Diana Nichols, Kent State University Library School – Student; Sara Jane Pearman, Cleveland Museum of Art; Yunah Sung, Cleveland Museum of Art; Lori Thorrat, Cleveland Museum of Art

The October meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened on Friday October 11, 2002 at the Cleveland Museum of Art with Ann Abid welcoming those in attendance followed by introductions.

  1. Topic: Image cataloging — collection management and vocabularies

Are VR collections using same vocabularies and authority files as OPACs and museum collection management systems? No. Sara Jane noted that she doesn’t use AAT, LCSH or LCNAF. She has discussed consistency/compatibility with curatorial departments and the registrar, but hasn’t persuaded them to work with her to develop uniform cataloging standards. Leigh made the point that librarians see catalogs as finding aids, but curators don’t see their databases as having only that limited function.

  1. Topic: Authority control and shared cataloging in visual resources collections

Discussed the possibility of VR community setting up a NACO-like project for shared authority files. Mellon has recently funded a project for CMA, Harvard and UC San Diego to explore the possibility of shared VR cataloging — both description and authority — called Union Catalog of Artist Images (UCAI). The end product will be a database that includes images.

  1. Topic: Shared vertical file database

Lori talked about the possibility of the member libraries of Ohio Valley ARLIS developing a shared database for vertical file material. Described how CMA has cataloged all of their VFs into their OPAC.

  1. Topic: Local database of artists

Hyosoo described a local database she has created at the Cleveland Institute of Art that indexes artists names included in exhibition catalogs for group shows. The database is extremely popular with their students. It’s available on their website as “Contemporary artist index”

http://www.cia.edu/administrative/academicaffairs/library/default.asp

  1. Topic: Local vs. LC classification systems

There was a discussion of the merits of using local classification systems vs. LC Classification. CMA is exploring the possibility of making the switch to LC.

The meeting was followed by a tour of the Museum’s Ingalls Library.

Notes by Anne Champagne

10/16/02

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

3rd Meeting

Hosted by the Evanston Public Library

June 21, 2002

The June meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened at 9:35am on Friday June 21, 2002 at the Evanston Public Library. 8 librarians were in attendance.

  1. Topic: art books in the Evanston Public Library

The Evanston Public Library houses the largest collection of art books in the area’s public library system. The library is a potential resource for Chicago-area patrons looking to check out art books, particularly because of the reciprocal borrowing agreement between the Chicago and Evanston Public Libraries. The collection is fairly broad and includes books on local artists.

  1. Topic: artists’ name headings and subject headings

Discussion on this topic revealed that while generally additional subject headings are not added to titles with an artists’ name heading, catalogers will add them if the additional heading is very specific. Most everyone agreed that they would not add headings such as “Sculpture, American,” but would consider adding headings such as “Glass sculpture, American.” It was noted that the focus of the collection is important to consider: a library with few books on landscape painting, or painting in general, may be more likely to add headings such as “Landscape painting, American” to records.

  1. Topic: photography books

When is a book of photographs classed as a photography book and when does it go with the subject of the photographs (either in 779 or a different subject number 900s, etc)? This question is easier for art libraries to answer because a given title has undoubtedly been purchased for the photography and not the subject matter, but for public libraries and general collections the answer is not so clear. As several of those present reported, titles may be divided between subject and photography until it becomes apparent that the photographer is an “artistic” photographer. Titles would usually then be classified by photographer. The point was made that in terms of classification for browsing collections, sometimes it is best to leave titles in the “wrong” locations for better browsing, but that reclassifying is sometimes necessary and can increase circulation. The general consensus was that these questions must continue to be answered on a case-by-case basis.

  1. Topic: big name headings

The problem of name headings that become big lists and tend to offer little help to the patron looking for “a book on Picasso” was discussed. The idea of the classed catalog was raised, but here built numbers could prove to be a problem and some libraries have ongoing reclassification projects or simply classification problems that would interfere. Still, the classed catalog could be used to divide big headings into smaller groups based on medium, but this would require patrons to have a better understanding of call numbers. Placing limits on searches to find keywords in the title (i.e. prints, drawings, paintings) was also suggested.

The next meeting of the MAC discussion group will be September 2002 at the Cleveland Museum of Art.

Notes by Amy Trendler.

7/1/02

Back to Minutes from Past MACDG Meetings.

Conference Quarter 2002

The discussion group does not meet during the first quarter of the year due to the fact that the Art Libraries Society of North America (ARLIS/NA) and Visual Resources Association (VRA) conferences are scheduled during this time. For proceedings of the 2002 joint ARLIS/NA, VRA conference in St. Louis (March 20-26), including minutes for the Cataloging Discussion Group held at the conference, see http://www.arlisna.org/conf2002/Conftoc.html

Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

Notes for the 2nd Meeting

Hosted by the Columbia College Library

December 7, 2001

The second meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened at 10:05am on Friday, December 7, 2001 at the Columbia College Library. Twenty catalogers were in attendance.

  1. Topic: visual resources classification

While some of those present confessed to having no written scheme, most use a modified classification system such as Simon-Tansey (from the University of California-Santa Cruz) or Fogg (from the Fogg Art Museum). Exceptions are often made for faculty preferences, and in some cases librarians work closely with the faculty on issues related to classification. It was noted that the interests of the faculty affect the classification system and that the system must respond to the patrons. As a result, no one model can be identified because every system is influenced by the faculty, the users in general, and the curriculum. But while most agreed that the system should respond to the users, it was also noted that the response should not take the form of dividing the collection into drawers of slides for each professor. Furthermore, the system cannot be modified to fit every request, as sometimes individual users’ needs and wants are not good for the collection as a whole. Most advocated the idea of an overarching system that may be modified in its smaller components. Still, some cited the difficulty in cases where there is precedence for making special arrangements for individual users. But if all else fails, most agreed that they can fall back on the catalog as a record of holdings, however those holdings may be arranged. As a cautionary note, it was observed that classification should not be driving cataloging, and vice versa. The issue of catalogs that combine print and visual resources was raised in this context. There were few cases in which the two are truly combined in one catalog, although OCLC’s Worldcat is one of these cases. More often visual resource and print catalogs are separate.

  1. Topic: cataloging manuals and in-house documentation

Several librarians indicated that their documentation was either currently available online (although in some cases it is only accessible internally) or that they were moving in this direction. It was mentioned that Web Dewey will allow library’s to annotate their copies, but some wondered if this wouldn’t open the door to huge maintenance projects. However, maintaining the notations should be easier in the online environment than it would be in print. Some of those present have had the experience of taking on a job when there was no manual or only outdated information and had to piece together or create documentation. Others wondered about using local notes in authority records to record information.

The question of how much local variation there was in practice was brought up and most agreed that they were trying to get away from non-standard practices, although many come from libraries had used some non-standard practices in the past. It was generally agreed that adhering to standards made things simpler in general and could make creating and maintaining documentation easier as well. The idea of using a “best example” system of actual records in place of written instructions for various art cataloging practices was put forth, but it was generally agreed that notes and written instructions used in conjunction with examples is preferable, particularly for the purposes of training. This raised the specter of training and the question of whether librarians used their in-house documentation for this purpose. The group was split on this issue, with some making heavy use of documentation in the training process and others using a train-as-you-go method of instruction and examples. Finally, it was noted that a “guide to good practice” was being developed as part of the VRA core project Some of the problems encountered in this endeavor are the difficulty of determining the entity when cataloging images and creating standard titles.

  1. Topic: reviewing cataloging output

Some librarians review all records while others perform spot checking or rely on training and make the quality of output a cataloger’s personal responsibility. It was generally agreed that the question of whether or not to review depends on the situation. For the Northwestern University slide library the quality of the data is more important than the time devoted to review (usually 3-4 hours per week). The library has recently standardized some practices and is adding records based on slide labels, so review has been deemed necessary, particularly to insure uniformity among subject heading selection. In this case automated reviews in the form of reports run on the catalog(one of the most common forms of review among those that do not review records on an individual basis) were not possible. At the MacLean Visual Resources Center they proof one another’s work and they feel that this provides a forum for discussion. For some it was important that the cataloger’s initials appear in the record to insure that questions that may arise later about a record may be directed to the person responsible. Some library systems automatically mark a record, but in others initials must be manually inserted. Finally, it was noted that reviewing output was also a management issue and that at some point one must accept a level of variety in cataloging.

  1. Topic: subject headings for images

A discussion of the value of subject headings in visual resource collections was an offshoot of the previous topic. The idea of not using subject headings for visual resources was proposed to eliminate the problem of reviewing cataloging for subject heading conformity. In the absence of subject headings titles would provide access. It was argued that subject headings for images are nebulous at best and not worth the effort, but others argued that subject headings were helpful for studio art students and other non-art history students, faculty outside of the art history department, and other types of users. Again, the user population will affect the practice. As for the types of subject headings used for image collections, these ranged from modified Library of Congress Subject Headings to homegrown systems to short lists of broad headings (i.e. portrait photography). Some felt that the subjects users would be looking for (i.e. political corruption) would not be covered by LCSH headings, but others advocated LCSH because the headings can be used to cross reference the visual resources catalog with the main library catalog.

  1. Topic: Art and Architecture Thesaurus

A further offshoot of this discussion dealt with the Art and Architecture Thesaurus and the question of whether or not anyone was using it to catalog books. Most agreed it was too costly to use for books because AAT terms would need to be created for virtually all incoming copy cataloging, and some felt that the terms in AAT were simply inadequate. However, AAT headings were used recently in a project at the University of Chicago to catalog a collection of broadsides, manuscripts, and related materials on the American West. In cases where the bibliographer preferred an AAT term these were added to the record and coded appropriately, but LCSH were used for the bulk of the project.

  1. Topic: education for visual resources librarians

The last topic of discussion was the education of visual resources librarians. While acknowledging that few library science programs offer courses in the field of visual resources or art librarianship, most felt that the MLS was a worthwhile degree. As to the usefulness of an art history degree, those present came from different backgrounds themselves and they cited examples from both sides: catalogers with M.A.s who were terrible at cataloging images, catalogers without M.A.s who were excellent visual resource catalogers, and vice versa. Some wondered if the visual resources librarian of the future would be a “digital image manager” without MLS or M.A., but others felt future visual resources librarians would need digital management training in addition to an MLS.

The next meeting of the MAC discussion group is scheduled for June 2002.

Notes by Amy Trendler.

12/14/01

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Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group

Notes for the Inaugural Meeting

Hosted by the Ryerson and Burnham Libraries

September 7, 2001

The first meeting of the Midwestern Art Cataloging Discussion Group convened at 10:40am on Friday September 7, 2001 at the Art Institute of Chicago. Nearly twenty-five catalogers were in attendance.

  1. The first topic of discussion was the issue of electronic resources and their relationship to the catalog. In particular, the question of whether online resources should appear in records in the catalog if they also appear in a separate online or electronic resources page on a library’s web site was discussed. The situation of the Ryerson and Burnham Libraries, which serves a variety of audiences with different levels of access, was highlighted. On the one hand the idea of the catalog as a record of all resources owned or accessed by the library is attractive, but on the other hand the reality of the complicated availability of some of these resources to users makes such an approach difficult. Some suggestions for dealing with different levels of access in bibliographic records included explanatory notes, and citing the URL but making it inactive (for cases in which only the reference staff may access a resource). It was also suggested that BI sessions and sites could make users aware of online resources instead of including records for these resources in the catalog.

It was noted that the University of Chicago original or copy catalogs many online resources, both fee-based web services and “free” web sites chosen by selectors or requested by users. Aggregator databases are the only exception to this policy, and in this case the library is looking into purchasing bibliographic records from the vendors for the parts of their aggregate sites. For those sites with restricted access notes are sometimes added to the bibliographic records along the lines of “available to subscribing institutions only.”

  1. The changes in LCSH for art and architecture were discussed. A quick overview of the changes prefaced progress reports. [For more information on the changes themselves, see the instruction sheets (http://lcweb.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/artcat.html), the weekly lists on the CPSO’s web site beginning with Weekly List 05, Jan. 31, 2001 (http://lcweb.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/ ). For examples of the changes, see Sherman Clarke’s web site (LCSH Revised Headings)] Most libraries have switched to the new format for new records, but not all have begun changing headings on older records. Approaches to the changes varied: some had to make the changes to records on a individual basis, some have library systems that can make global changes, and some consortium members must wait for their consortia to make the changes. It was noted that duplication of headings results when using global change functions, but this was considered less important than making the change to the new format.
  2. The relationship between visual resources and online catalogs was discussed. The Northwestern University Art History Slide Library catalog has been available online as a Voyager catalog for a year now. The catalog is not integrated with the main library’s catalog, but the slide library’s catalog is offered as a link from the main library’s page. In the future digital slides will be available in the catalog, but access to these will be restricted. Since the catalog has been made available more off-site and non-art history users have used the collection, placing somewhat of a strain on the staff, but these patrons tend to use different parts of the collection than the art history department.
  3. The issue of image protection was raised. It was noted that the Berkeley slide library restricts images by size–offering only a thumbnail image. More often slide libraries watermark images or restrict access to members of the institution. It was noted that slide librarians try to work with copyright restrictions, but there is not enough staff time to deal with rights in such a way as to make the library’s holdings available to all. As a result, there is a great deal of repetition among holdings because images are not accessible outside of each institution. The AMICO database and similar projects may be the wave of the future, providing a basic collection that is enhanced by images acquired for local demand and use.
  4. MARC for images was discussed. The Northwestern University Art History Slide Library has mapped MARC to the VRA core tags. Columbia College is beginning a project to map their old format to MARC and convert their database. Clean up of the newly mapped and converted records will be a significant part of the project. Columbia will also be converting from a local thesaurus to LCSH for their image collection. Northwestern University has been successful in using LCSH for images although occasionally fudging with LCSH to create more appropriate headings.
  5. The question of an all digital image collection was broached. Most felt there was a long way to go before this becomes a reality. The cost, technical limitations, the need for electronic classrooms, and traditional methods of teaching art history were cited as factors against digital image only collections. The portability of slides and projectors and the fact that slides were used in spaces outside the art history classroom were also mentioned. On the other hand, some have found that a push for digital images has come from within art history departments where multiple users often compete for the same images.

The next meeting of the MAC discussion group is tentatively scheduled for December at Columbia College.

Notes by Amy Trendler.

9/17/01

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