Archives of American Art

The Archives of American Art is the world’s preeminent and most widely used research center dedicated to collecting, preserving, and providing access to primary sources that document the history of the visual arts in America.

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What's Happening at the Archives
  • In this episode, Brooklyn-based painter Maia Cruz Palileo navigates Cherokee painter Kay WalkingStick's journey with family, art, and history. From grappling with heritage to creating art that transcends boundaries of all kinds, follow the evolution of WalkingStick's practice along the path she has painted all her own. 

Mail art (alternatively called “correspondence art” or “postal art”) emerged as a form of artistic practice in which an international network of participants use the mail to make art and share it with others regarding culture and communications, creatively sidestepping the art market and, in many instances, eluding government censors.

  • Oral history interviews conducted with Native artists are highlighted by Ben Gillespie, the Arlene and Robert Kogod Secretarial Scholar for Oral History at the Archives of American Art.

The Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, is pleased to announce Between Artists: In Conversation with History, a six-episode series from its podcast ARTiculated: Dispatches from the Archives of American Art.

About the Archives

Original material can be consulted by appointment in our Washington, D.C. Headquarters.

Select holdings are available on microfilm at the Archives' offices in Washington, D.C. and at our New York Office.

Copies of unrestricted microfilm materials can be obtained through one of our affiliated research centers.

Internship, fellowship, and volunteer opportunities provide students and lifelong learners with the ability to contribute to the study and preservation of visual arts records in America.

A virtual repository of a substantial cross-section of the Archives' most significant collections.

Visit the Terra Foundation Center for Digital Collections