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.

Using Artstor: Finding Images

Artstor: an overview

Artstor: An Overview

The Artstor Digital Library is an image database where you can find more than 2 million images from the world's museums, archives, libraries, and scholars for use in research across subject areas. There are many different ways you can search for content in Artstor, including:

  • Browsing by geography, classification, or collection
  • Keyword and filtered search
  • Advanced search

Search tips:

  • Use quotations ("civil war") to search for exact phrases 
  • Geography always refers to a creator's country of birth, except for architecture/built environment images, which are based on geographic location
  • Use wildcards to broaden your search
    • Asterisk wildcard: trap* returns results for trap, trapping, trapper, trappist 
    • Question mark wildcard: advis?r returns results for adviser and advisor

Advanced Search

Advanced Searching

Use advanced search to narrow your search right from the start. Some search tips:

  • Limit your search to specific data fields such as title, creator, material, culture, and more using the dropdown menu to the right of each search term 
  • Search for multiple terms (bombay OR mumbai) (puppies AND kittens) using the dropdown menus to the left of each search term

Watch a video tutorial on conducting an advanced search in Artstor: 

Keyword and Filtered Search

Keyword and Filtered Search

Search for a keyword ('peony') and filter your results by geography, classification, and date.

Watch a video tutorial about conducting keyword searches in Artstor:

Viewing Images

Viewing Images

Click on a thumbnail in your search results to view an image.

Watch our instructional video about the useful features you can find in our image viewer: 



Not sure what you are looking for? Browse images by:

  • Geography (Albania, China, United States)
  • Classification (photographs, architecture, paintings, science and technology)
  • Collection (The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Panos Pictures)

If you are accessing the above links off-campus, you need a registered Artstor Account to gain access. Learn more about registered accounts in this video.

Learn more


Need more help? Check the schedule below and sign up for our webinar "The Expert Search: Advanced Methods for Searching and Discovering Content" to become a master searcher!