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Special Collections

The Decker Library's Special Collections include artists' books, archives, graphic design and illustration annuals, and other rare and/or fragile materials.

Any items found in the online catalog with a location of CAGE are Special Collections materials. CAGE materials can be used at a designated table within the library by presenting your valid id card to a librarian on the lower level. The following are guidelines for using these collections:

  • Items are non-circulating, unless otherwise specified.
  • Some materials may require the use of gloves. These will be provided by a librarian.
  • Materials can be photocopied or scanned only with permission of the librarian.
  • Pencil only must be used to take notes from these materials.

MICA Historical Archives

The library holds a collection of materials documenting the history of the Maryland Institute College of Art back into the mid-nineteenth century. Included are annual reports, catalogs, photographs, scrapbooks, yearbooks, and other publications and ephemera. more information...

The archives can be consulted by appointment only, and are for in-house use. Please email refer@mica.edu or phone (410) 225-2714 for more information or a specific inquiry. Please note that documentation is sporadic for many eras.

MICA Moving Image Archives

This collection, located in the Media Resources Collection, includes recent and historical footage of lectures, events and exhibitions at MICA. Many of these materials can be searched in the Decker Library and Media Resources Catalog. Efforts are ongoing to fully catalog and provide access to the collection. Some of the duplicate DVDs and VHS tapes are available for circulation but most must be viewed in the MRC. Please contact the MRC at 410-225-2274 or mrc@mica.edu for specific inquires or for more information about the collection.

Masters Theses Collection

The Decker Library maintains and provides access to the Masters Theses documentation submitted by graduate students of the Maryland Institute College of Art from the 1950s to present. The thesis collection is non-circulating, but materials can be viewed in-house by request to a librarian.

The collection is cataloged in a database which can be searched by student name, graduation year, and graduate program, using the link below. This catalog presently provides online PDF files of artist statements for years 1999-2007, as well as a listing of artworks included. Digitized examples of artworks included in the theses are in the process of being added, starting with the most recent years.
Masters Theses Catalog

Book Arts

The Decker Library collects many exemplars of the book arts. This teaching collection includes unique and limited-edition artist books and fine press editions, all of which are available for study by individuals and class groups. We have a web-based visual catalog with browsing and searching abilities, accessible on- or off-campus.
Book Arts Catalog

Artist Files

The Artist File is a vertical file located on the lower level of Decker Library. Arranged alphabetically, it contains items of an ephemeral nature such as small exhibition catalogs, brochures, and announcements, many including illustrations. Artists include the great masters of art history and major contemporary artists, especially those who have exhibited in the last five years.

Some of the catalogs can be checked out of the library. They are listed in the Decker Library and Media Resources Catalog with the location of "Catalogvf." All other Artist File materials do not circulate, but can be photocopied or scanned within the library. The file is self-service.
Artist File Inventory

Image at top right: Maryland Institute Hall, engraving.