Black Artists & Modernism
How do artists of African and Asian descent in Britain feature in the story of twentieth century art? There is an implied oversight that has been highlighted in Kobena Mercer’s essay ‘Iconography after Identity’ (2005), where he suggests that an art historical amnesia prevails in relation to Black-British art; of forgetting the artistic object in favour of discussions about ethnicity and identity politics. The result of this focus, Mercer argues, inevitably deflects attention away from the work of art.
Black Artists & Modernism (BAM) was a three-year research project which addressed the understated connections and areas of contention between Black-British artists’ practice and the work of art’s relationship to Modernism through close readings of works of art, artist dossiers, interviews, study days, public symposia and a searchable database of works of art in public collections across the UK. Work around the project continues through various channels. The BAM Vimeo site is a useful repository of recorded symposia and other events.
The British artist Sonia Boyce is closely involved in the BAM project, and she also features in the BBCFour documentary ‘Whoever Heard of a Black British Artist? Britain’s Hidden Art History‘. First aired in July 2018, this programme was shown again in July 2020 and is still available to watch on BBC iplayer.
A recent article (October 2020) in the Double Negative, by Dr Anjalie Dalal-Clayton, is a current link back to the BAM project. Dalal-Clayton talks about his work developing the database of works by black British artists in public collections. “Art institutions in the North-West of England have been pivotal in exhibiting Black British artists over the decades, writes Dr Anjalie Dalal-Clayton. So why do our public art collections remain so white?”
See our recent ‘resources of the week’ below:
The Library has arranged direct access to Artstor until 31st December. This resource is always available to Courtauld students and staff via Senate House Library, but direct access means that a Senate House membership is not required – only your Athens login credentials.
With approximately 300 collections composed of over 2.5 million images (and growing), scholars can examine wide-ranging material such as Native American art from the Smithsonian, treasures from the Louvre, and panoramic, 360-degree views of the Hagia Sophia in a single, easy-to-use resource.
Artstor also supports study across disciplines, including anthropology from Harvard’s Peabody Museum, archaeology from Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Art Archives, and modern history from Magnum Photos, making it a resource for your whole institution.
The Artstor Digital Library provides straightforward access to curated images from reliable sources that have been rights-cleared for use in education and research — you are free to use them in classroom instruction and handouts, presentations, student assignments, and other noncommercial educational and scholarly activities.
And unlike results from Google or other search engines, our images come with high-quality metadata from the collection catalogers, curators, institutions, and artists themselves.
LGBT Magazine Archive is a searchable archive of major periodicals devoted to LGBT+ interests, dating from the 1950s through to recent years, which contains archival runs of 26 of the most influential, longest-running serial publications covering LGBT interests. The archive chronicles more than six decades of the history and culture of the LGBT community.
The archives of magazines serving LGBT+ communities are of central importance for research into LGBT history, often being the principal sources for the documentation of gay cultures, lives, and events. Researchers consulting these publications may trace the history and evolution of myriad aspects of LGBT history and culture, including legal contexts, health, lifestyle, politics, social attitudes, activism, gay rights, and arts/literature. Despite the value of these publications for research, however, locating the backfiles in print format has been difficult for researchers as they have not typically been collected by libraries.
The archives of 26 leading but previously hard-to-find magazines are included in LGBT Magazine Archive, including many of the longest-running, most influential publications of this type. Crucially, the complete backfile of The Advocate is made available digitally for the first time. As one of the very few LGBT titles to pre-date the 1969 Stonewall riots, it spans the history of the gay rights movement.
LGBT Magazine Archive also includes the principal UK titles, notably Gay News and its successor publication Gay Times. Launched in 1972 in the aftermath of the partial decriminalization of sex between men in 1967, Gay News became the primary vehicle for news of the growing liberation movement.
Archives of Sexuality and Gender provides a robust and significant collection of primary sources for the historical study of sex, sexuality, and gender. With material dating back to the sixteenth century, researchers and scholars can examine how sexual norms have changed over time, health and hygiene, the development of sex education, the rise of sexology, changing gender roles, social movements and activism, erotica, and many other interesting topical areas. This growing archival program offers rich research opportunities across a wide span of human history.
The Archives of Sexuality and Gender program consists of four archives:
LGBTQ History and Culture Since 1940, Part I
LGBTQ History and Culture Since 1940, Part II
Sex and Sexuality, Sixteenth to Twentieth Century
International Perspectives on LGBTQ Activism and Culture
The Archives of Sexuality and Gender program is essential for scholars and researchers focused on sex, sexuality, and gender studies; health and hygiene; cultural change; LGBTQ studies; women’s studies; American studies; civil and human rights; journalism; literature; social movement history; British twentieth-century history; and more.
Black Lives Matter
A selection of digital resources celebrating Black artists and heritage, to provide a platform for learning more about racial justice within the world and art world.
Most of the resources listed below are open access.
University of Minnesota Press – Reading for Racial Justice: The University of Minnesota Press is committed to challenging white supremacy, police violence, and unequal access to criminal justice, education, and resources. This collection of antiracist books is available to all to read online for free through August 31, 2020.
Arts Council England: Equality and diversity within the arts and cultural sector in England. Evidence and literature review final report England:
‘“There is a lot of hard work to be done”: How the art world can step up for Black Lives Matter’ by Aindrea Emelife, Independent, 16 June 2020.
Beneath the Hood on ArtFilms Digital: What is it like to be 15 years old, living in Hackney, east London and excluded from mainstream school? Beneath The Hood is a challenging documentary telling the stories of students at Daniel House Pupil Referral Unit in Hackney.
25 Must Watch Black Art Documentaries: From music to literature to fashion to visual arts, no one can deny the global influence of Black creativity. Around these parts, we celebrate Black history year-round, bookmark this page, and check out one of these documentaries for enlightenment and inspiration.
Black Art and Activism, RA Podcast: Artists Sonia Boyce RA, Dr Kimathi Donkor and Jacob V Joyce join arts practitioner and academic Dr Michael McMillan to discuss whether black artists today are expected to challenge global and national issues of race and representation.
Art Matters podcast: soul of a nation: Interview with Zoé Whitley, co-curator of Soul of a Nation at Tate, on how today’s events echo the protests and marches of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s and 1970s.
What If Our Textbooks Were Black? BBC Radio 4 programme: Naomi Beckwith celebrates Black cultural figures who should be more central to history.
Ghostlight: Illuminating Black Artists: A new podcast hosted by Elaina Walton MaRah Williams that analyses plays written by black playwrights while exploring contemporary cultural significance for the culture.
Black Thought and Culture: A landmark electronic collection of approximately 100,000 pages of non-fiction writings by major American black leaders—teachers, artists, politicians, religious leaders, athletes, war veterans, entertainers, and other figures—covering 250 years of history. [Senate House]
Black Studies Center: A fully cross-searchable gateway to Black Studies including scholarly essays, recent periodicals, historical newspaper articles, reference books, and much more.
Black British Visual Artists: A directory of UK-based black artists.
Black Heritage at the V&A: The V&A holds a variety of material relating to black heritage and culture, including fashion, photography and performance.
Black Identities and Artists at Tate: Discover black art and artists in the Tate’s collection.
British Black Arts Movement: Tate’s guide to the British black arts movement, a radical political art movement founded in 1982 inspired by anti-racist discourse and feminist critique.
Museumand – National Caribbean Heritage Museum: For many centuries, Caribbeans have helped to shape and influence our shared British culture, heritage and achievements, but their stories are often left untold. We aim to bring those stories to life for everyone, by exploring, preserving and sharing the history, heritage and culture, both past and contemporary.
Black Cultural Archives: Black Cultural Archives is the only national heritage centre dedicated to collecting, preserving and celebrating the histories of African and Caribbean people in Britain.
Black Artists & Modernism National Collections Audit: Database compiling an audit that seeks to determine in which publicly-funded collections one can find artworks by artists of African, Caribbean, Asian and MENA Region descent who were born in, lived, worked or studied in the UK.
Decolonization in the Arts Education
UAL Decolonising Arts Institute: Seeks to challenge colonial and imperial legacies and drive social, cultural and institutional change.
Decolonization on Frieze: List of articles tagged with ‘Decolonization’ on Frieze.
Decolonising the Curriculum by Richard Hylton in Art Monthly 426, (May 2019).
Decolonizing Art Institutions, OnCurating 35, (Dec 2017).
Decolonizing Art History by Catherine Grant and Dorothy Price in Art History 43, no. 1 (Feb 2020), pp. 8-66
How Do You Decolonize an Arts Institution? An open letter to the Brooklyn Museum by activist group Decolonize this Place suggests a way forward.
Dismantling the Master’s House by John Giblin, Imma Ramos & Nikki Grout in Third Text 33, no. 4-5 (2019), pp. 471-486.
10 Nonprofits You Can Support to Amplify Black Voices in the Arts: A list of foundations, projects, funds, and collectives supporting Black artists.
Black Artists Grant: £1,500 given out monthly to 3 black artists in the UK.
Black Owned Galleries to Support Across the US: Compiled by Artsy.
London Black Art: Twitter feed about black art events in London
Support Black Art: Instagram page dedicating to sharing Black art.
The Chicago Manual of Style
Need help with referencing? The library subscribes to The Chicago Manual of Style with hundreds of citation examples.
Now in its 17th edition, The Chicago Manual of Style—with more than two thousand hyperlinked paragraphs online—has become the authoritative reference work for authors, editors, proofreaders, indexers, copywriters, designers, publishers and of course students.
The Chicago Manual of style is a Running Note style of citation that uses out-of-text referencing. A superscript within the text connects to references in footnotes or endnotes and a separated bibliography is included at the end of the text.
The full version of the Manual includes useful information on the publishing process but the most useful section for students is Part III, Source Citations and Indexes and chapter 14 Notes and Bibliography. It includes examples of every possible reference. Particularly useful when you want to reference Websites, Blogs and Social Media (14.205-210), Audiovisual Recordings and Other Multimedia (14.261-268), Interviews and unpublished works such as theses and conference papers (14.211-220). Each chapter starts with an outline of the general principles of referencing the source and then it follows with examples in the note and bibliography.
You can access the full version off campus with your Athens credentials or via the Remote Desktop Connection
MuseumsEtc publish books on museum theory and practice including collecting and exhibiting photography. They are valuable resources that cover contemporary issues on curatorial practices and museum administration.
MuseumsEtc is an independent publisher based in Edinburgh, UK and Boston, US; the Library has set up access to seventy of their books.
Their latest publication is the For Love or Money: Confronting the State of Museum Salaries, a volume of case studies from North America and United Kingdom.
Look out for titles such as Feminism and Museums: Intervention, Disruption and Change, a two-volume work published in 2017-2018 and Inspiring Action: Museums and Social Change from 2016. They are just a few of the ones that explore how museums are responding to socio-political challenges.
Access is granted via Exact Editions with your Athens credentials. https://reader.exacteditions.com/
Search each of the e-book platforms we list on our online resources web pages to discover the 1000s of titles you have access to from providers including A&AePortal, DawsonEra and E-Book Central (ProQuest).
Provides access to important art and architectural history scholarship, including key backlist and out-of-print titles on a wide variety of subjects more broadly available and easily discoverable within an interactive platform. The ePortal also features scholarship from other leading university presses and museum publishers, and an image search allowing you to explore images from the publications included.
Access: Sign into the Open Athens portal and link to A&Ae from the ‘all resources’ list.
Provides full-text access to the majority of the publishers titles including those on architecture, art and visual culture, fashion and history.
Access: Select the ‘log in via your institution using Shibboleth’ option under the ‘Helpful Tips’ section of the sign in page. Then select ‘Courtauld Institute of Art’ and use your Athens username and password.
Provides access to a curated collection of e-books on the history of art and architecture individually chosen and purchased for you by Library staff.
Access: From the DawsonEra homepage, select ‘sign in’ then select ‘OpenAthens login’.
E-Book Central (ProQuest)
Provides authoritative e-books in a range of subjects from leading publishers, including many selected by Courtauld students and staff
Access: Sign in with your Athens username and password
Provides access to EBSCOs entire academic e-book collections, including over 11,000 works on art and architecture, more than 27.000 history titles and 13,500 language and study guides.
Access: Sign in with your Athens username and password
Dissertations and theses
PhD theses and MA dissertations are an important resource, presenting original research and new ideas which are not already in the public domain as well as having extensive, useful bibliographies.
During closure, registered members of the Courtauld Institute can connect to digitally available theses and dissertations via several pathways.
British Library EThOS for over 500,00 doctoral theses produced by students in the UK;
DART-Europe E-theses Portal for access to European research theses; ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global which offers the most comprehensive collection of dissertations and theses from around the world and American Doctoral Dissertations available via Ebsco.
The ProQuest provision can be accessed through Senate House Membership as well as via our Courtauld website for a limited period.
We can also provide digital copies of Courtauld MA dissertations from 2017 onwards and Courtauld PhD theses from 2010 onwards. Please see our new guide to searching for Courtauld dissertations and theses using the book library catalogue. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your request.
For external researchers based at academic institutions we can potentially offer digital copies of our PhD theses via Interlibrary Loan. Please email email@example.com for more information about this or any other enquires.
Ebook Central provides authoritative ebooks in a range of subjects from the world’s top publishers and is one of the fastest growing and most comprehensive platforms. Due to the impact of COVID-19, ProQuest Ebook Central has opened unlimited access to Ebook Central holdings for all patrons through June 30.
From a single interface, access over 810,000 ebooks from more than 650 publishers, including Bloomsbury, Taylor & Francis, Tate, Palgrave Macmillan, and Cambridge University Press.
Ebook Central’s content covers a full range of subjects, including a wealth of texts on the arts, history, and the humanities. Most books are in English, but there are some titles in other languages including German, French, Italian, Spanish, Czech, Chinese, Dutch, Hindi, Greek, Latin, Polish, Ukranian, Portugese, Malay, Russian, and more.
You can search by keywords, title, subject and more to quickly and easily find relevant ebooks and chapters. Read online or download the ebook to read on the go, including on your laptop, tablet, or mobile. Easily search within the ebook as well as highlight, take notes and bookmark pages in your online copy. Expand and organize your collection by saving books to your virtual bookshelf.
Artfilms-Digital is a contemporary arts streaming service, covering visual art, architecture, applied arts, performance art, dance and more. 67 new titles have very recently been added to the resource, bringing the number of available videos to 1500.
This unique collection originates from Australia, UK, USA, Germany, Denmark, France, Hungary, Canada, Switzerland, Pakistan, Indonesia, Africa and Japan. Access offsite is either via the OpenAthens portal, or via Remote Desktop connection.
We have included a couple of trailers for Artfilms-Digital videos below.
Guides to referencing
Our Librarians have recently updated our Courtauld Style Guide. This user friendly guide gives clear examples of a wide variety of sources, showing how to format your references in the Courtauld style. Download our revised style guide.
The Courtauld style is a slightly adapted version of Chicago, so you can also use the Chicago online style guide to help you with your referencing. Link to the Chicago manuals.
Most if not all of your referencing questions should be addressed by our Courtauld Style Guide. If there’s something that’s not covered in it, or anything that you aren’t sure about, you can consult the Chicago guides to check. The ‘quick guide’ is actually fairly comprehensive; the full one is extremely detailed, far too detailed for the purposes of most! In any case, a combination of our own guide and the Chicago guides should be more than adequate. Remember that referencing is not there as a test to trip you up – think of it as signposting so that other readers (whether your assessors or others interested in your field of research) can easily follow up your sources so that they too can read them. As long as you follow the instructions that have been given to you (in our style guide), on any occasions where you can’t find what to do using common sense based on other examples (in the Chicago manual), and do everything consistently, then you’ve done a good job. You don’t need to agonise over it, so if you are stuck at all or you just want to check something out with us then please get in touch. We’ll be glad to help you.
New resources from Bloomsbury
Bloomsbury is a publishing house, renowned for their scholarly and academic publications. The last few years the company has expanded into digital resources and their collection is growing fast and strong.
You may already be familiar with Bloomsbury Fashion Central that the library subscribes to. The Book Library has arranged access to several additional Bloomsbury databases for a limited period.
The Architecture Library includes Sir Banister Fletcher’s Global History of Architecture, a classic work for the discipline. This is a very good database for the study of the history, theory and practice of architecture. The Library has the print volumes of the Cultural History of the Senses which has been the basis of the Cultural History database. This resource includes surveys and e-books on the social and cultural construction of specific themes from antiquity to the present day. Excellent resource for anthropology and cultural studies. Finally, the Bloomsbury Collections is the publisher’s e-book platform. The majority of their publications are available full text there.
We mention here only a fraction of the content of Bloomsbury Digital Resources. There is a wealth of reference, primary and secondary sources and images for you all to explore. Details of the content can be found on our online resources web pages and we have added links to our subject guides on the VLE. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for any enquiry. We are here to help!
Access off-site is via your Athens username and password. From the Bloomsbury resource homepage, follow the ‘login’ link at the top right. On the sign in page, under ‘helpful tips’ on the right, follow the link for ‘Shibboleth login’. Search for the Courtauld and you will be re-directed through to the Open Athens sign in and back again.