|Columbia University Archives|
At a Glance
This collection is arranged in one series and is arranged by date.
The records in the collection reflect the Department's mission and its daily operations. The materials contained within it include exhibition proposals, catalogs and posters, photographs, general correspondence, and other administrative files.
Using the Collection
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Restrictions on Access
There are no restrictions on this collection.
This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.
Terms Governing Use and Reproduction
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron. Please contact the Office of Art Properties if you wish to publish materials from the collection.
Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Columbia University Office of Art Properties Records; Box and Folder; University Archives, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University in the City of New York.
Selected Related Material at Columbia
Additions are expected
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
This collection was processed by Elena Cordova, MLIS Intern, Art Properties. Finding aid written by Elena Cordova in May 2014. Updated by Jocelyn Wilk in May 2017. Encoded by Joanna Rios in May 2017.
2017-05-26 File created.
2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.
History / Biographical Note
Biographical / Historical
Art Properties was established in 1964 by the Committee on Artistic Properties and administered under the auspices of the Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library. The Department oversees the art collections owned by Columbia University and is responsible for documenting and preserving the art holdings of the University and making them available to both the University community and the general public. The collections comprise over 15,000 works in all media -- painting, sculpture, works on paper, photography and decorative arts. Although Columbia has not intended to assemble a major collection of works of art, thousands of objects have been acquired by donation over the course of the University's two-hundred-fifty year history. During the 1960s, however, a museum collection was contemplated. It was at this time that hundreds of works from the Ancient Near East and from East Asia were acquired through the generosity of Dr. Arthur M. Sackler and members of his family. Other significant gifts of note over time include: a collection of southeast Asian and Korean ceramics gifted to the Department by Frank B. Michaelian between 1962 and 1976; sixty-nine paintings and drawings by the American artist Florine Stettheimer (1871-1944), bequeathed to Columbia by her sister Ettie Stettheimer in 1967; over one hundred Native American objects (including rugs, baskets, ceramics and ritual items) donated by Stanley B. and Caroline Stein in 1997; and a series of Andy Warhol (1928-1987) Polaroids and prints donated by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts in 2008.
The works in Art Properties fall into four categories: museum-quality art objects; study collections; works relating to the history of the University; and works appropriate for display in public spaces and private offices. Objects are on view throughout the campus: some very publicly, like Daniel Chester French's Alma Mater and Auguste Rodin's The Thinker; others are less visibly installed in administrative and faculty offices. The majority of the art collections are in storage, but are available for research and study by the Columbia community and outside scholars by appointment. From the date of its endowment in 1986, The Wallach Art Gallery was connected to Art Properties. In 2011, the two were separated. Since 1965, Art Properties has also utilized the Rotunda and the Faculty Room of Low Library as exhibition spaces to display works from the permanent collection as well as temporary and traveling exhibitions. Most of these exhibitions were organized by faculty and staff from various Columbia schools and departments, librarians and staff from Columbia University Libraries, and external guest curators, in coordination with Art Properties curators and staff.