Monday / 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Wednesday / 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Friday / 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

First-time Library visitors can make an appointment by contacting or 619.696.1959. After the first appointment, visitors are welcome during normal open hours.

About the Library

The Research Library, located next to the May S. Marcy Sculpture Court and Garden is the region’s largest library specializing in the visual arts. The Library’s holdings comprise more than 30,000 volumes covering a wide range of art topics, with a special emphasis on Italian Renaissance, Spanish Baroque, Indian miniature painting, and Chinese art. In addition, 15,000 bound volumes of art periodicals represent 440 different periodicals, with current subscriptions to 25 key periodicals.

The Library maintains an extensive collection of individual files containing information on more than 30,000 artists, from Old Masters to contemporary art makers. Several key online databases are available as well, providing access to periodical article indexes, full-text articles, and high resolution images.

The Library houses a collection of rare books, prints, and periodicals that provide a deeper understanding of visual culture and art history. Most notable within the rare book collection are the catalogues raisonnés and East Asian art folios.


About the Archives

Located inside the Research Library, the Archives are the repository for a wide range of materials dealing with the history of the Museum and of the arts in San Diego. The collection includes items relating to key figures in the growth of the Museum such as the Bridges and Putnam families, Earle Grant and Pliny Munger, Dr. Clarence and Mrs. Ellis Spreckels Moore, Mr. and Mrs. Irving Snyder, and the Museum’s first director, Reginald Poland.

Papers, letters, photographs, and sketchbooks of several important artists including Robert Henri, Donal Hord, William Templeton Johnson, Alice Klauber, Alfred Mitchell, Walter Pach, Arthur Putnam, Roland Schneider, Florence Kemmler Schneider, and Fritz Werner are also in the collection.