Art, Architecture & Engineering Special Collections

Photo of artist book
Photo of artist book "Flowers in a Box"

The Art, Architecture & Engineering Special Collection includes rare, fragile, and/or limited editions. For example:

  • Early English editions of Alberti's Ten Books on Architecture.
  • Architectural treatises by Palladio, Soane, Stuart, Gibbs, and others.
  • New editions include artists' books, limited edition monographs and facsimiles (e.g., sketchbooks from Le Corbusier's travels in Germany and Asia, Aldo Rossi's sketchbooks, and sketches by Jackson Pollock).

Strengths in the special collections include publications from the first decades of the twentieth century, especially those by Le Corbusier and various Bauhaus designers, as well as Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright. Several dozen black and white photographs of Wright's residential architecture taken by Henry Fuermann in the first decades of the twentieth century augment these publications.

Use of the Collection

The collection is available for individual or small group research by appointment. Volumes cannot be checked out, and are used only in the Special Collections area located in the Art, Architecture & Engineering Library room B240. To consult the Art, Architecture & Engineering Library Special Collections, please contact Jamie Vander Broek ( or Rebecca Price (

Database of Artists' Books

Although some of the artists' books in the AAEL collection can be checked out, the ones featured in the database of artists' books require more careful handling and are only available for viewing on-site in the Special Collections room B240. If you would like to see a book from this database in person, please contact to make an appointment or for more information.

The U-M Library houses many collections of unique or rare materials beyond what's available at AAEL. Visit the U-M Library Collections page to access notable collections, view digital collections, or to find a specialist.

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Last modified: 08/27/2018