Class meets Wednesdays: 3 to 5:50pm
Location:  PMC, Room 613
Instructors:  Cristina Pattuelli and Farris Wahbeh

Cristina Pattuelli
Office: PMC, 604A | Office Hours: Thursday 12-3:00pm and by appointment
Email: | Website:

Farris Wahbeh
Office Hours: By appointment

Course Description

This course explores current methodologies in the documentation, description, and management of artist records and their works of art in order to gain an understanding of current trends and best practices. The course will provide a foundation for students to develop localized standards to serve different stakeholders across the fine arts spectrum so that international standards are leveraged for particular needs. By investigating the complexities in documenting the artist and their works of art, students will learn the information gathering needs for contextualizing artist’s work through the retention, acquisition, and processing of core documents. The course will also address use patterns and reference practices of art documentation for museums, artist’s studios, foundations and estates, and academic stakeholder communities. Additionally, key elements that define core concepts of documentation standards for a large body of artists’ work, such as data elements that comprise an artist’s catalogue raisonné, will bring to focus the necessary tools needed to document, contextualize, and implement proper documentation strategies for the artist. This class will bridge theory into practice by providing students a forum to develop their skills by researching case scenarios of audience sectors in the fine arts and incorporating those findings using software platforms for dissemination.

Course Goals

  • To provide students with the practical skills necessary to document artists and their working practice
  • To introduce students to the range of theoretical and practical issues surrounding the creation and management of artist records for historical purposes
  • To offer the opportunity to gain hands-on experience with applying museum content and metadata standards to local art-related environments
  • To promote an understanding of how data gathering and records retention of artists and works of art can serve as forms of preservation practices
  • To provide real-world experience in issuing a proposal to stakeholders targeting key aspects of documenting artistic practices

Student Learning Outcomes
By the end of this course, students will be able to:

Museum MS

  •  Recognize a range of methods and best practices used to document artists and their works of art.
  •  Assess and apply appropriate art documentation strategies in a variety of settings including an artist’s studio or archive, a museum, or a non-profit arts organization.
  •  Draft and present a professional proposal for art documentation projects for a variety of stakeholders.
  • Create archival records using an XML open-source data management platform for multimedia content description and discovery and applying museum standards such as CCO and LIDO.


  •  Recognize a range of knowledge organization methods and standards used to describe multimedia and archival objects in the domain of art.
  •  Analyze and apply the principles and best practices appropriate to document and manage special collections.
  • Evaluate and select appropriate documentation strategies for a variety of settings, from archives to museums and galleries, and present professional proposals to potential stakeholders.
  • Assess national and international projects that address distributed and integrated discovery and provide access to cultural objects.
  • Create archival records using an XML open-source data management platform for multimedia content description and discovery and applying cultural heritage standards such as CCO and LIDO.

LIS 653-Knowledge Organization or by instructor’s’ permission.



Richard Hamilton, Marcel Duchamp, 1967

Art Documentation RFPs 2015
Art Documentation RFPs 2016
Art Documentation RFPs 2017
Art Documentation RFPs 2018
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