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Public Collections

This guide provides an overview of the Artstor Public Collections

Cornell: Theatre Prints and Books from Early Modern Japan

Through a combination of books from the Rare and Manuscript Collection of Cornell University Library and single sheet prints from a private collection, this collection documents the roles of theater in literature, visual culture and daily life in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in Japan. The materials on Japanese theater gathered in this archive derive from three distinct collections: the William Elliot Griffis Collection, given to Cornell in 1914; the Maeda Ai Collection, acquired by the library in 1998; and a private, Ithaca-area collection that has been made available on request to the University for research, exhibition or teaching purposes. The library materials consist of woodblock printed books on the theater, from the eighteenth through late nineteenth century, while the bulk of the private collection is single sheet prints, from the same period.

Emerson College Sarah Moore Field Collection

The Sarah Moore Field Collection contains theater programs and playbills dating from the late 1880's to early 1960's. Geographically the collection spans Boston to New York, with the emphasis of the collection depicting Boston theater productions from 1900-1920. The collection was donated to Emerson College by the Sarah Moore Field Estate, North Andover, MA.

Lawrence University Department of Theatre Arts Productions

This collection contains images, programs, and other materials from theater productions that have been produced by the Lawrence University Department of Theatre Arts. The materials in this collection highlight the creative work of the actors, directors, set designers, and many others who bring these productions to life on the stage.

Motley Collection of Theatre & Costume Design

The Motley Collection of Theatre and Costume Design is a valuable source of documentation on the history of theatre and is housed in the Rare Book & Manuscript Library at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. It is a rare collection of original materials on the theatre comprising over 5,000 items from more than 150 productions in England and the United States. These materials include costume and set designs, sketches, notes, photographs, prop lists, storyboards, and swatches of fabric. The Motley Group consisted of Margaret Harris, her sister Sophia Harris, and Elizabeth Montgomery, who designed sets and costumes from 1932 to 1976 for plays by Shakespeare and modern classics, opera, ballet, and motion pictures. Their designs were used in productions in the West End of London, the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, the English National Opera, and in the United States on Broadway and the Metropolitan Opera in New York City.

Trinity College Watkinson Library: Ephemera: Theater, British Playbills

This collection comprises about four hundred 18-19th Century British theater playbills given to Watkinson Library by Nathan H. Allen in 1916. Playbills functioned as advertising posters for theatrical performances at theaters in London and in towns including Bath, Leicester, Liverpool, Richmond, Scarborough, Swansea, and Tewkesbury. Some playbills were printed on both sides and may also have functioned as programs during a performance. The playbills display a wealth of information about upcoming productions, including play and music titles, roles and performers, and related information such as cost of seats and where to purchase tickets. For additional information regarding the collection, contact the staff of Watkinson Library (

University of Cincinnati: Bonnie Cashin Collection

Bonnie Cashin (1915-2000), a pioneer in women's sportswear design, is perhaps most well-known for her innovative work in leather, her creative use of vivid colors, her clever, Asian-inspired approach to layering, and her application of heavy hardware to almost all her designs. The UC Bonnie Cashin Collection is housed in the Robert A. Deshon and Karl J. Schlachter Library for Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning (DAAP) at the College of DAAP at the University of Cincinnati. This teaching collection comprises over 200 historical garments designed by Bonnie Cashin while she worked with Phil Sills between the years of 1960 and 1980. These garment samples were manufactured by Phil Sills and Co. between the years 1960-1979.

University of Puget Sound: Theatre Arts Productions

This collection documents the process of faculty directed campus productions from script to stage through images of set, stage and costume renderings and photographs, production photographs, programs and posters.

University of Rhode Island: Theatre Department Images

URI Theatre Department Productions 1968-2000. 239 Series 1, Box 1-59
The digital collection is comprised of slides of selected productions with costumes and original costume sketches by Resident Costume Designer, Joy Spanabel Emery, her students and guest artists between 1968 and 2000. The slides were taken by Emery during Photo Calls to document the production.