Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

ARTH 390 - The Arts in Italy - Iggy Beerbower: Finding Articles

What is an Article?

An article is a composition (usually non-fiction) on a topic of interest, written by one or more authors and published in a collection (such as an encyclopedia) or periodical. Periodicals (also called journals) are scholarly magazines that have articles on timely topics (e.g. specific artists and works). Journal articles tend to be shorter than books (e.g. 10-20 pages), and the topics they cover tend to be more focused. 

Art topics

Try these databases for Art related topics:

1. Art Index (W.H. Wilson) 

2. Bibliography of the History of Art (BHA) and the Répertoire de la litterature de l'art (RILA)  

3. Academic Search Complete

Look for the green FINDIT button (or the "check for full text" link) to locate the full text or request access to these articles.

Other topics

Articles on other topics, such as Olive Oil, Stone houses, and Gladiators may be found in one of 120+ other databases. Here are a few databases that might be useful:
  1. Academic Search Complete
  2. Historical Abstracts
  3. Anthropological Literature
  4. JSTOR
  5. Google Scholar

Hints for Searching Library Article Indexes

  1. Try a title or keyword search
  2. Most databases have a list of suggested subject words on the initial results page. Look at them (you may need to toggle them open) and copy the useful ones. If there is no list, then look at a number of potentially useful records and copy down words and phrases from the "subject" or "descriptor" area of single record. Some databases provide a thesaurus of terms which can lead to broader, related, or narrower terms you may not have thought of.
  3. Go back to the search screen and search BY SUBJECT/DESCRIPTOR using the words you learned about as a result of your first search.
  4. Be sure to connect search terms correctly using the following techniques:

Boolean connectors

  • AND connects different concepts and narrows a search: Bernini AND Portrait
  • (  OR  ), with parentheses, combines synonyms/related terms and broadens a search: Christ AND (Pieta OR Death OR Tomb)
  • "  "  Use quotation marks for phrases: "Painting techniques" AND Carravagio
  • Stem*  Use the asterisk as a wildcard character to retrieve variations on a common stem: paint* retrieves paint, paints, painter, painting, paintings, painter, etc. Very useful for capturing plurals

Extra Searching Suggestions

You have two proper nouns: the name of your artist and the name of the work.  Use them as SUBJECT terms (watch out if your work has a foreign language equivalent)

Be sure to use the limiters on the advanced search screen to limit to :

  • Document Type: Article
  • Publication Type: Academic Journal

Be sure to use the limiters on the results screen on the left to limit to:

  • English Language
  • Appropriate Date ranges

Use the green "Article Linker" button (or the "check for full text" link) to check on our access to these articles.


Crumb Library: 315-267-2485
Crane Library: 315-267-2451

Text Us! (Mon-Fri, 10 - 4): 315-277-3730

Social Media

College Libraries


SUNY Potsdam College Libraries
44 Pierrepont Ave
Potsdam, NY 13617