Mission

The School of Visual Arts Archives serves as the final repository for the historical records of School of Visual Arts. Its primary purpose is to document the history of the School and to provide source material for administrators, faculty, students, alumni, and other members of the School community, as well as scholars, authors, and other interested persons who seek to evaluate the impact of the School’s activities on the history of American artistic, social, and cultural development. The SVA Archives is a division of the Visual Arts Foundation.

The core mission of the School of Visual Arts Archives is as follows:

  • To appraise, collect, organize, describe, make available, and preserve records of historical, artistic, legal, and/or administrative value to the School of Visual Arts
  • To provide adequate facilities for the retention and preservation of such records
  • To provide information services that will assist the operation of the School
  • To serve as a resource and laboratory to stimulate and nourish creative teaching and learning
  • To serve research and scholarship by making available and encouraging the use of its collections by members of the School and the community at large
  • To promote knowledge and understanding of the origins, aims, programs, and goals of the School, and of the development of these aims, goals, and programs
  • To implement records management by formulating policy and procedures that will ensure the collection and preservation of archival materials

Collection development

The School of Visual Arts Archives collection development policy is based in part on the Society of American Archivists’ Guidelines For College and University Archives (May 2006). In the absence of systematic records management, the School of Visual Arts Archives must rely on the cooperation and support of administrators, chairs, directors, faculty, students, and alumni to ensure that materials of historical value are collected and preserved. The School of Visual Arts will promote school-wide records management and collect material in the following categories from all administrative and academic units of the School:

Official records, papers, and publications of the School of Visual Arts

Official records encompass the records or papers generated or received by the various administrative offices of the School of Visual Arts in the conduct of their business. These records will include:

  • Minutes, memoranda, correspondence, and reports of the Board of Directors
  • Records of the Chairman’s Office including correspondence, administrative subject files, and reports
  • Records of the Office of President, including correspondence, administrative subject files, and reports
  • Records of the Office of the Executive Vice President including correspondence, administrative subject files, and reports
  • Correspondence, subject files, and reports of the Office of Academic Affairs
  • Correspondence, subject files, and reports of the offices of central administration, including: Campus Life, Communication, External Relations, and Finance
  • Correspondence, subject files, and reports of directors and administrators of the schools, divisions, and programs of the School
  • Minutes, memoranda, and reports of all major academic and administrative commissions, councils, and committees
  • Departmental records, including: minutes, reports, correspondence, and syllabi
  • Accreditation reports and supporting documentation
  • Records of the Registrar, including timetables, class schedules, enrollment reports, graduation rosters, and other reports issued on a regular basis
  • Alumni records, including minutes of the alumni associations
  • Reports of the Admissions Office
  • Records of student organizations
  • All publications, newsletters, and booklets distributed in the name of the School of Visual Arts, including catalogs, bulletins, announcements, posters, yearbooks, student publications, School directories and faculty/staff rosters, faculty and administration newsletters and publications, alumni publications, and ephemeral material
  • Photographs, negatives, slides, audio and video film, tapes, and reels, oral history interviews, and optical and compact discs documenting the development of the School
  • Maps, prints, and architectural drawings documenting the physical changes and development of the School
  • Reports of research projects, including grant records
  • Artifacts relating to the history of the School of Visual Arts
  • Machine-readable records

The official administrative records of the School of Visual Arts (correspondence, reports, and subject files) designated as archival should be inactive and no longer used in the current activities of the originating office. Records should be forwarded to the Archives according to a schedule after consulting with the Archivist. An inventory of records transferred should accompany accessioned material. The originating office may place restrictions on access to non-current records in addition to the restrictions on administrative, Board of Directors, employee, and student records described in the Access Policy statement.

Personal and professional papers of the School of Visual Arts faculty

The School of Visual Arts Archives seeks to acquire, organize, and provide access to the personal and professional papers of the School of Visual Arts faculty as a means of documenting the internal life and culture of the School community. Space and staff restraints in the Archives and the size of the School of Visual Arts faculty require limits on the volume of faculty papers that can be accessioned. In appraising and soliciting faculty papers the following criteria are suggested:

  • National or international reputation in a visual arts or design field
  • Record of service with the School of Visual Arts and contribution to its growth and development
  • Service on the faculty of a recognized area of excellence within School of Visual Arts

The School of Visual Arts Archives seeks documentation of the careers of the School of Visual Arts faculty in the following formats:

  • Correspondence: official, professional, and personal
  • Biographical material: resumes, bibliographies, biographical sketches, chronologies, genealogies, newspaper clippings, and personal memoirs
  • Photographs, slides, and graphic materials
  • Recordings of lectures, speeches, and discussions
  • Lecture notes and syllabi
  • Artwork, posters, printed samples, and ephemera
  • Departmental or committee minutes and records
  • Drafts and manuscripts of articles and books
  • Diaries, notebooks, scrapbooks, and memorabilia

The School of Visual Arts Archives recognizes the rights of faculty and private donors to impose reasonable restrictions on materials to protect privacy and confidentiality. Restrictions on access should be for a fixed term and determined at the time of donation. The Archives encourages minimal access restrictions consistent with the legal rights of all parties.

Special collections

The School of Visual Arts Archives will also solicit and collect records and papers which are neither official School records nor faculty papers, but which relate to the history of School of Visual Arts. Examples include:

  • Professional and personal papers of the members of the School of Visual Arts Board of Directors if associated with School business
  • Professional and personal papers of eminent alumni relating their School of Visual Arts experiences
  • Papers, records, and published items on School of Visual Arts and its role in the history of art education