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UCC Library now Re-opened.

Both Boole and Brookfield BHSL Libraries have re-opened with the safety of Library users and staff as our chief guiding principle.

Please see our policies and important changes regarding re-opening here

Update from our Director of Library Services, Colette McKenna regarding Library Services During COVID Level 5 - Here

Special Collections' & Archives' Subject Support: Art

How Special Collections can help you with your research, teaching, learning & assignments.

Introduction to Art Resources

Special Collections & Archives have a wide range of items and collections to assist research on Art. In some cases the collection may be of interest as with the fine printing presses of Cuala, Three Candles and Dolmen Presses, whereas in others it may be the provenance that is of more interest: Robert Gibbings Collection or Elisabeth Friedlander Collection (library).

We also hold the Elizabeth Friedlander Collection (archives) containing the working papers of a graphic designer famed for her intricate boarder designs, and her custom designed font 'Elizabeth', as well as a small collection of letters relating to Cuala Press (1922-1939).

Within the landed estate collections 19th & 20th century sketchbooks and scrapbooks belonging to individuals illustrate their travels around Ireland, England and Europe, giving a snapshot of places and people visited, as well as different artistic styles and materials used (pencil/pastel/watercolour).These archival collections include:
The Bantry Estate Collection (Co. Cork)
The Bantry Estate Collection: Ancillary (Co. Cork)


The selection of bookplates held within the library is varied with a number of reference works also present. 

Reference works include:

Bookplates within the collection include: 

This image contains two of the bookplates held within Elizabeth Friedlander's collection: that of Alexander Magri MacMahon and Walter Toscanini. When Queen's College Cork became UCC in 1908 a new bookplate for the library was required. Robert Gibbings designed the replacement bookplate. 

Art Course & Module Guides

Opening Hours

As per Irish Government direction from midnight 21 October 2020 for 6 weeks all counties are placed on Level 5 under the Plan for Living with COVID-19. The advice is: Stay at home with certain exceptions. Please note this time frame may be extended. 

Previous appointment services in Special Collections and Archives are suspended during Level 5.

We are offering the following as alternate means of access to Special Collections & Archives:

  • Scan & Deliver for Special Collections' material including items in the Reference Reading Room, Microform and items that show Special Collections by Request / Special Collections by Appointment on the library catalogue.
  • Reprographic requests for manuscripts & archival material via

Every effort will be made to fulfil scan & deliver / reprographic types of requests, but this may not always be possible due to availability, copyright restrictions, size and condition of materials.

If you have any collection queries or other queries please email:

In order to facilitate research queries, a virtual appointment service for Special Collections and Archives will shortly be established and details will be forthcoming.