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Library . Institute Archives 


The Institute opened its doors in 1882 as the Western Reserve School of Design for Women; since then, the Institute has grown into an internationally recognized professional college of art and design, offering majors in 15 areas of fine art, design, craft, and digital arts.

The collection includes the following:

  • CIA scrapbook (an indexed clipping file from 1882-2021)
  • Photographs (from 1882-2000)
  • College catalogs, posters, a publications collection that includes exhibition announcements, and other special collections relating to CIA’s history, such as Christmas cards by CIA people, non-CIA exhibition announcements, some governance documents, and correspondence from World War II.
  • Digital archive containing posters from CIA’s Student Independent Exhibitions is available to the CIA community and to library visitors.
  • Link Magazine, CIA's publication for alumni and friends, began in 1966, and appeared between one and four times a year. In 2002, a new series began. Issues are available in the library's general collection and the archives. Click here for select PDFs of back issues.

In addition, the following lists are compiled and maintained by the library staff:

CIA’s Library Archives serve as the historical record of the college from 1882 to the present, and its focus is the Institute's print publications, photographs, and a clipping file. The archives do not include the records of the Registrar; minutes and deliberations of the faculty, administration, or the governing boards; CIA business records, records of the auxiliary and international programs; or the Cleveland Art Association. With regard to unsolicited gifts, we add only those materials that enrich understanding of the CIA's institutional history. 

Using the Archives 

  • The Archives service hours are Monday-Friday from 9am to 5pm, according to librarian availability. Outside researchers must make an appointment prior to coming to the library. CIA faculty, staff and students should call in advance.
  • Materials from the Archives do not circulate and must be used in the library.
  • The CIA Scrapbook, indexed by personal name and subject, is available on microfilm during regular business hours.
  • All other Archives materials must be paged. Appointments are required for outside researchers. Appointments are encouraged for CIA faculty, staff and students. Visit this page to begin the appointment process. While we very strongly prefer that you visit the page listed here to ask questions or schedule an appointment, you may call 216-421-7440 and ask to leave a message for the archivist. 
  • Photocopying and photographing arrangements vary and are permitted only with the permission of the library staff. Personal cameras are allowed for photographing items from the Archives.
  • CIA does NOT own the copyright for all materials in the CIA Archives. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and contact the copyright holder for permission before reproducing for publication any materials from our archives.
  • Use of these materials in any publication should acknowledge the Archives of the Cleveland Institute of Art at the Jessica R. Gund Memorial Library.

Contact a Librarian

Need help?

CHAT with a library staff member during our open hours.

Schedule an online or in-person appointment with a librarian

(Choose a 30 or 60 minute appointment with the librarian whose schedule best meets your needs. Appointments can be done in person or online via Zoom. Please use the email link below if you need help outside of available hours and we will set that up with you!)

Email a Librarian

Or text 216-208-4157

If you do not have access to email, call 216-421-7440.

Be sure to visit the library's blog for the latest news and updates!

A sampling of the celebrated artists and designers associated with CIA includes painter Charles Burchfield, industrial designer Viktor Schreckengost, Op art painters Julian Stanczak, Richard Anuszkiewicz and Ed Mieczkowski; conceptual artist and writer Joseph Kosuth; minimalist painter Robert Mangold; automotive designer Gerald Hirschberg; ceramicist Toshiko Takaezu; and Arthur creator Marc Brown. 

Additional Resources

The Artists Archives of the Western Reserve preserves and stores art created by its members, many of whom are associated with the Institute.

The Cleveland Artists Foundation is dedicated to preserving, collecting, exhibiting, and promoting Northeast Ohio’s visual art history.

The Ohio Memory Project celebrating Ohio’s Bicentennial, contains Institute images and catalogs from the early years.

Archives of American Art has microfilm copies of CIA Scrapbooks Volumes 1-36 (1882-1981) but not the index. These microfilm copies may be requested for use in your local library.