Research Collections

Thinking of Offering Archive Material?

The Paul Mellon Centre actively collects archive material relating to the study of British art and architectural history and is happy to hear from individuals or institutions that have material they would like to offer.

The Paul Mellon Centre actively collects archive material relating to the study of British art and architectural history and is happy to hear from individuals or institutions that have material they would like to offer.

The Centre is a specialist repository for archive material relating to the study of British art and architectural history. The majority of the papers held here were created by art historians, many of whom were pioneers in the formation of the discipline. The papers of art critics, dealers, curators and scholars are also collected.

All archive material is acquired in accordance with the Centre’s official Archive Collection Policy Statement, which sets out the types of material the Centre does and does not collect. This document has been approved by the National Archives and the Centre’s governing body at Yale.

The Centre follows best practice in all aspects of archive acquisition, in particular:

  • it seeks to find the most appropriate repository for the material and will not collect in conflict with other institutions
  • it seeks to preserve the integrity of the material and therefore does not usually accept partial collections, or collections where the majority of the material is already held elsewhere
  • It seeks to acquire unique original material and therefore does not usually accept collections that contain a significant volume of photocopied materials

The Centre aims to develop its archival holdings in a coherent and consistent fashion so that together the collections form a body of material that supports research in the field of British art and related disciplines. With this in mind, all individuals offering material are requested to forward initial information. Once this has been received, the Centre will follow standard procedure for assessing potential offers.