Auction catalog databases are essential in Museum Libraries, but in fact, they can be critical for Art Historical researchers as well.  We now have two new databases that might be good tools for our researchers:

OCLC logoSCIPIO  : art and rare books sales/auction catalogs:

This database provides bibliographic access to art auction and rare book sales catalogs from all major North American and European auction houses as well as private sales, from the late sixteenth century to scheduled auctions not yet held.   It is a valuable source of information on the provenance of art objects and rare books, the history of collection, and contemporary and historical mark et trends. Records include the dates and places of sales, the auction houses, sellers, institutional holdings, and titles of works.  SCIPIO is available only on the OCLC® FirstSearch® service.

Ask Art logoAskART:

AskART is an online database containing over 270,000 artists. The focus was on American artists from the early 16th-Century through the present, but beginning in January of 2007 the database was expanded to include international artists’ auction records.


*For access to these you must be a Columbia University affiliate, or you must access them using a Columbia University Library computer.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *