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Art Research

How to Find Images in OneSearch

OneSearch offers a variety of ways to find images available to the Queens College Community. 

Basic Search

  1. Go to the library webpage (
  2. Go to the search box located near the top of the page.
  3. Enter your search term or keyword into the search box and press SEARCH.
  4. Your search results will include resource from across the QC Library's physical and online holdings.
  5. Narrow your results to only include images by choosing RESOURCE TYPE and selecting IMAGES.

Advanced Search

  1. Go to the library webpage (
  2. Use the link ADVANCED SEARCH below the search box.
  3.  Enter your search term or keyword into the search box 
  4. under MATERIAL TYPE on the right side of the page select IMAGES and press search.

Digital Image Collections

High quality images may be found from a variety of online sources. The Queens College library maintains subscriptions to Artstor and Jstor, which offer a numerous images and reproductions of artworks. In addition, there are a number of open access image resources with searchable databases, offering a plethora of images during the research process. 

Below, is a selection of image databases.

Images in Books & Periodicals

High quality images may also be found in books and periodicals from the library's physical collection. Images obtained from books may be scanned for future use in research papers and presentations. 

Library scanners are available on levels 2 and 3 of the Benjamin S. Rosenthal building.

Copyright, Public Domain, and Fair Use

Copyright Laws

Understanding United States copyright laws can be challenging, as much of the copyright law is still somewhat murky and still being debated in the courts. The underlining principle of intellectual copyright and public knowledge is, "Congress shall have power... to promote the progress of science and useful arts by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries." (United States Constitution, Article I, Section 8) Artists own the copyright and representations of their works, sometimes up to 70 years after the artist's death.

Artist's Rights

Artists in America should read about intellectual copyright protection and representation from the Artists Rights Society. The Design and Artists Copyright Society (DACS) protects artists' rights in the United Kingdom. Also, read the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990.

Public Domain

95 years after publication, artwork enters the public domain. For example, works published before 1929 are now in the public domain, such as the original black-and-white Mickey Mouse by Ub Iwerks. More information about works entering the public domain can be found at the Public Domain Review.

Fair Use

The fair use doctrine is an important aspect of copyright law; it allows students, faculty, researchers, universities, and libraries to copy, distribute, and use copyrighted works to support education for the public good. For example, contemporary and modern artists are protected by copyright laws; however, students and faculty must be able to reproduce and SEE the artwork to learn about the artist and artistic movements. Copying a Warhol print for education, research, and non-commercial purposes would be fair use. Students do not need permission from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts to photocopy a representation of a Warhol for class papers or discussions.

Creative Commons

Creative Commons is, in a sense, a way for a global community to support public access to unrestricted information. Photographers can contribute and add their original works to the public domain through sources like Unsplash, Wikimedia Commons, and Flickr Commons. Learn more about Creative Commons licenses at Creative Commons.

Always consult a copyright lawyer if unsure about copyright laws in the United States. More information about copyright laws can be found linked below.