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Fine Arts Subject Classifications


Included in this category are the fonds which contain material relevant to the organization and management of the fine arts. Some examples of administrative type documents are contracts, royalty statements, rental agreements for performance space, and investor correspondence.


Consists of material relevant to those who are recognized in some way for making a significant contribution to the fine arts. This includes awards presented to both artists, and facilitators of the arts. Recognitions range from merits for a single, remarkable contribution, such as a best selling novel, to ceremonies honouring a lifetime of achievement in the fine arts.


Material relating to biographical information about an artist. Can include published or unpublished biographies and autobiographies, as well as curriculum vitae and other personal information of a biographical nature.


The correspondence included here is both personal and professional. Often it revolves around arranging publicity or funding for a project and can provide some context within which an artist is working. Some examples include correspondence between an artist and art gallery promoting his or her work or letters to a family member describing progress on an artistic endeavor.

Creative Process

Includes material relevant to the documentation of the creative process. May contain diaries, research material, manuscripts, choreography notes, etc.

Creative Writing

Creative Writing encompasses fiction, poetry, drama, and children's literature. In addition to the author, the editor, publisher, teacher, and critic are included in this category.


Included are the fonds of those who critique the arts as well as reviews collected by the artists themselves.


Material related to all disciplines of dance. Included in this category are the fonds of the dancer, as well as the facilitators of dance; i.e. those who promote, teach and critique dance.

Dramatic Arts

Material relevant to those involved in all aspect of the dramatic arts. Included in this category are the fonds of not only the actor, but all those involved in theatre production; i.e. those who direct, promote, review, and educate.


Material relevant to teaching, pedagogy and fine arts, ranging from course outlines, lecture notes and student papers dealing with the fine arts, to material dealing with fine arts pedagogy, issues of education and creativity (pre-school to graduate school).


Material relevant to those involved with art and film. In addition to filmmakers, screenwriters and actors, included are those who direct, produce, teach and review moving images.

Final Product/Completed Art

Completed artistic works, in any medium. Includes musical scores, novels, audio and video recordings of live performances, etc. This guide is inclusive and makes no comment as to the artistic merit of any creative endeavor.


Encompasses all material relevant to fundraising for the fine arts. Included in this category are both government and private funding. This includes government grant applications, awards and rejections, as well as appeals to private organizations for financial support for various shows and festivals.


Includes documentation on or about the organizations which support, govern, and promote the fine arts. Also included are the fonds of individuals involved with these organizations.


Includes material relevant to all musical styles. The fonds of the musician, both performer and composer, are included. Those who promote, educate and critique music are also included, and are cross-listed with other applicable categories.


Material relating to all aspects of promoting, and creating an audience for, completed work in any of the fine arts. Included are previews, programmes, advertisements, brochures, catalogs, etc.

Various Media

Included are all fonds, which contain as a part of the creative process or completed art, some non-textual record. Examples include video recordings of dance performances and rehearsals, audio recordings of poetry readings or artist interviews, as well as models of set designs.

Visual Art

Material related to art expressed through all visual mediums. Artists included in this category are those who create by painting, sculpting and printmaking, as well as those who photograph, work with ceramics, metals, and mixed media. Included in this category as well, are those who display, collect, educate and critique the visual arts.

York University

Indicates that a fonds contains documentation that, in addition to being relevant to one of the other classifications, is also associated with York University. Most often the fonds, or documents within it, are those of York faculty or alumnus. It may also indicate documentation dealing with York policies, organizations or departments dealing with issues concerning, or of concern to, the fine arts on campus.