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Strictly speaking, an exhibition catalog is a work published to document an exhibition, and includes a list of works exhibited. It may or may not contain additional information, such as illustrations, introductory essays, analyses of the works of art, biographical information on the artists, etc.
These can come in a couple of different flavors: solo and group.
Solo exhibition catalogs focus on the work of a single artist, whereas group exhibition catalogs document an exhibition that features more than one, sometimes several artists. While group exhibition catalogs may contain valuable information about a single artist, it will not likely be very comprehensive.
Example of a solo exhibition catalog:
Book publishers use the term "artist monograph" to indicate books dealing with a single artist, as opposed to broader surveys of art subjects.
As the name implies, artist monographs are books about a single artist. They usually highlight the major bodies of work by an artist and often include biographical information and critical essays about the artist. You may have a more difficult time finding artist monographs about younger or emerging photographers.
Example of an artist monograph:
This is a comprehensive, annotated listing of all the known artworks by an artist either in a particular medium or all media. The works are described in such a way that they may be reliably identified by third parties.
Catalog raisonnés provide the most comprehensive overview of an artist’s body of work because they seek to document every artwork an artist has ever made, either comprehensively or in a specific medium. For the most part, you will only find catalog raisonnes for very well established artists.
Example of a catalog raisonné:
Library of Congress Call numbers
|NC||Drawing, Design, Illustration|
Arts in general (includes works dealing with two or more of the fine arts, i.e. Art & Film, Art & Music, etc.)
Other related call numbers
|T 385||Technology (specifically, computer graphics)|
|TS||Manufactured products (industrial design, product design, etc.)|
|TT||Handicrafts, arts and crafts, fashion|
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