Ok, they were previously 0% findable. Still, by adding the MoMA Film Department Special Collections inventory to the MoMA web site, film researchers can now discover over 100 primary-source collections on film-related figures and topics. The processed (and partially-processed) collections include papers on individuals (filmmakers, distributors, animators, actors), studios (Biograph, Edison, Kalem), and groups (Film and Photo League).
Processing the acquisitions on the Special Collections shelf is always a highlight of my week, especially when I know we’re expecting mail from Printed Matter or a book artist has been by to visit recently. I approach the task knowing that strange and beautiful books of all shapes and sizes await me, and that processing will most likely not entail the usual rote click-click-click through, a cog in the wheel of acquisitions procedure, as the majority of the artist’s books we acquire are not in OCLC's WorldCat, a world-wide catalog of library catalogs, and require a unique new record to be generated.
When studying the collection at MoMA Library, we often reveal compelling stories of how certain books were produced and how these objects travelled through the world. With experimental art and design publications of the 20th century, part of the story of a book’s history relates to its circulation from the hands of friends to a wider audience, into the collections of museums and libraries.