Oral History Projects and Interviews
Oral History Association. Resources for the practice of oral history.
Oral History in the Digital Age. Resources for the practice of digital oral history.
The Internet Archive. Access to historical collections that exist in digital format, including transcripts as well as video and audio recordings of interviews. Contains The Bancroft Library's Regional Oral History Office's projects on architects, landscape architects, and artists.
The Nanette l. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America at the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Extensive collection of oral history interviews of artists, craftspeople, designers, educators, museum directors, and institution builders. Many transcripts and audio clips online; untranscribed audio recordings on site.
Craft in America. Profiles of craft artists, past and present, as well as teaching and research resources.
American Craftspeople Project: Oral History, 1984-1988, Columbia Center for Oral History. Interviews with craftspeople in ceramics, fiber, glass, metal, and wood. Transcripts are not digitized.
The Quilter’s S.O.S (Save Our Stories) at the Quilt Alliance. Extensive collection of oral history interviews and a downloadable manual for conducting interviews. Transcripts and photographs online.
The American Folklife Center, The Library of Congress. Resources for the study of American folklife, including photographs, manuscripts, audio recordings, and moving images as well as guidelines for conducting oral histories. Collections onsite.
Voices in the Visual Arts, Camberwell College of Arts, University of the Arts, London, and the Design History Society. Interviews with design and architectural historians, curators, publishers, designers, craftspeople, and artists. Annotated audio excerpts online; full audio recordings on site.
Chicago Architects Oral History Project, Art Institute of Chicago. Interviews with architects who have contributed to Chicago’s built environment. Transcripts and documents online.
Pioneers of American Landscape Design Oral History Project, The Cultural Landscape Foundation. Videos with clips of interviews with landscape designers.
Foundation of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works Oral History Project. An archive of transcripts of interviews with conservators, conservation scientists, and related professionals.
Revision Path. A weekly showcase of Black designers, artists, developers, and digital creatives from all over the world. In-depth interviews about their work, goals, and inspirations.
The HistoryMakers. National African American Video Oral History Collection.
Contemporary and Historical Research
The American Craft Council Library. Comprised of physical and digital collections and resources, including archives documenting all American Craft Council conferences, fairs and activities (1941-present), and exhibitions held at the Museum of Contemporary Crafts/American Craft Museum from 1956 to 1990. Also features links to national, regional craft organizations, state arts and craft councils, craft museums, and craft education programs.
The Center for Craft, Creativity and Design advances the understanding of craft by encouraging and supporting research, critical dialogue, and professional development in the United States.
Makers: A History of American Studio Craft, a project of the Center for Craft, Creativity and Design. A comprehensive history of the American studio craft movement.
The Journal of Modern Craft online. Covers all aspects of craft as it exists within the condition of modernity without geographical or disciplinary bounds.
Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. Collaborative research, presentation, conservation, and continuity of traditional knowledge and artistry in the United States and internationally. Resources include exhibitions, documentary films and videos, symposia, publications, and educational materials.
The Design History Society. Resources for the study of design history, past and present.
Society of Architectural Historians. Resources for the study of architectural history.
The Decorative Arts Society. Resources for the study of decorative arts and design, past and present.
The Textile Society of America. Resources for the study of textiles worldwide.
Costume Society of America. Resources for global understanding of dress and appearance.
The Costume Society. Resources for the study and preservation of historic and contemporary dress.
Practice and Study
Craft Resources, American Craft Council Library. Links to professional organizations in ceramics, glass, enameling, mosaics, metalsmithing, furniture making, woodturning, woodcarving, fiber, textiles, weaving, tapestry, quilting, embroidery, needlepoint, lacemaking, basketmaking, papermaking, and bookmaking.
Association of Traditional Hooking Artists.
The Industrial Designers Society of America. Features interviews with and profiles of industrial designers, past and present.
World Design Organization. International non-governmental organization that promotes the profession of industrial design. See programs and research resources.
Human Factors and Ergonomic Society. Resources for the practice of human factors and ergonomic design.
International Ergonomics Association. Resources for the practice of ergonomic design.
American Institute of Graphic Arts. Features interviews with and profiles of graphic designers.
International Council of Communication Design. Resources for the practice and study of communication design.
Council of Fashion Designers in America. Resources for the practice of contemporary fashion design.
International Association of Clothing Designers and Executives. Resources for the practice of clothing design.
The American Institute of Architects. Resources for architectural practice. The AIA has also sponsored oral history projects in Cleveland, Ohio, and Dallas and Houston, Texas.
American Society of Interior Designers. Resources for the practice and study of interior design.
American Society of Landscape Architects. Resources for the practice and study of landscape design.
Bard Graduate Center
Voices in Studio Glass History: Art and Craft, Maker and Place, and the Critical Writings and Photography of Paul Hollister rethinks and reinterprets the history of postwar American studio glass. This digital exhibition and archive builds upon the work of critic and historian Paul Hollister, who published over eighty articles on the field, recorded interviews with artists, and photographed them at work. The site presents this material along with an annotated bibliography of Hollister’s articles, downloadable or linked to online sources; and, new interviews artists, curators, critics, historians, and gallerists.
The Bard Graduate Center degree programs lead to the MA and PhD in the history of decorative arts, design history, and material culture studies.
As a multi-faceted Research Institute, Bard Graduate Center encompasses the Bard Graduate Center Library, Digital Media Lab, academic events, fellowship programs, Focus Project exhibitions, and publication of the journal West 86th and the series Cultural Histories of the Material World. Research projects including the Bard Graduate Center Craft, Art and Design Oral History Project and initiatives for the study of Jewish material culture, conservation science, and the work of anthropologist Franz Boas.
The Bard Graduate Center Library is a non-circulating collection of over 50,000 volumes for advanced studies in decorative arts, design history, and material culture. Open to researchers by appointment.
West 86th: A Journal of Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture. Available online and in print, the journal focuses on scholarship in material culture, design history, and decorative arts.
Bard Graduate Center events include academic lectures, seminars and symposia. Topics include modern design history, New York and American material culture, arts of Africa and the African diaspora, Indigenous arts, cultural history, conservation and museums, silver, glass, 18th-and 19th-century French decorative arts, Renaissance and Early Modern material culture, Jewish material culture, and medieval material culture in China, Europe, and the Islamic world.
The Bard Graduate Center Gallery presents research-driven exhibitions curated by the director and curators, faculty members, staff, and curatorial consultants. Focus Project exhibitions are curated by faculty members in collaboration with Bard Graduate Center students. Exhibitions are accompanied scholarly publications and public programs.