A Portrait of the Library: A Fine History
The Elam School of Fine Arts amalgamated with Auckland University College in 1950, bringing with it a small collection of art books. From these beginnings the Fine Arts Library has developed into the well-funded and reputable arts library that exists today. Throughout its history the Library has supported the Elam School of Fine Arts and later the Department of Art History and has in turn been integrated into and supported by The University of Auckland Library system. This research utilised an historical case study approach to identify and analyse how this web of interconnected relationships has influenced the development, maintenance, and future of a specialised art library. The findings illustrate that, while the Elam School of Fine Arts and the Department of Art History have experienced considerable curricular and administrative changes, these have not had a significant impact on the efficiency and value of the Library. The Fine Arts Library’s collection and services have consistently supported and enhanced the teaching and research needs of these two entities. Despite accommodation, staffing and funding challenges, the Fine Arts Librarians and Library staff, succeeded in establishing a comprehensive and nationally recognised art library with a strong, vibrant and unique culture.