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Gifts Of Art Work Policy


Statement of Policy & Text

Prospective gifts and/or purchases of art works will be reviewed by the University Library Dean and the City Librarian to determine the appropriateness for inclusion in the SJSU or SJPL library collection. Works of art not appropriate for inclusion in the library collections, if offered to the University Library, shall be referred to the University Art Collection Committee, and if offered to the SJPL system shall be referred to the City Art Commission. For cases in which the donor is not closely affiliated with either organization and wishes to give generally to the King Library, the University Library Dean and the City Librarian shall determine whether the University Art Collection Committee or the City Art Commission is the most appropriate body to receive the referral.

The Library will provide recognition to all individuals, groups, and corporations who donate, services, financial support, or actual gifts of art to the Library. Appropriate recognition shall be determined through consultation with the donor and shall generally be consistent with the recognition given to library donors.

Display of art works that are accepted is at the discretion of King Library. There is no obligation for display.

See also XT-94 Criteria for Acquisition and De-acquisition of Art Works under References C: below.

Need for the Policy

Both the San Jose State University Library and the San Jose Public Library brought a limited number of original art works to the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library. In addition, a number of significant works were commissioned for the building by the City of San Jose's Public Art Program. Due to space limitations and the implied responsibility for maintenance, any art works offered to the King Library must be carefully considered for acceptance according to specific criteria.

Requirements & Guidelines

  • Art works acquired by King Library should be of sufficiently high artistic merit to warrant inclusion in the Library collection. This usually requires that the artworks be unique pieces created by professional artists of established reputation or recognized potential.
  • Art works should be compatible with the character of the Library and appropriate for a City/University Library setting.
  • Art works should not detract from or conflict with the permanent public art collection installed by the City's Public Art Program.
  • Art works should support a unified vision for the Library’s public art collection
  • Ongoing funding for maintaining and conserving donated art works must be sufficient. Funding must be identified for the installation and lifecycle maintenance of all art works prior to acquisition.
  • Art works must be durable, sound, non-hazardous, and maintainable in terms of the nature of the materials.
    • An exception to this could be made in the case of works, which are specifically time-based or of a temporary nature when it is understood that their installation would be of limited duration.
  • Nothing precludes the rights of Libraries to arrange for temporary exhibits or displays.

Applicable Personnel/Departments

All King Library Employees, especially Administration




Reviewed and approved by:Signature/NameDate of Approval

Dean of Library Services, SJSU
Patricia Breivik

Director, San Jose Public Library
Jane Light

History & Dates

Category of Policy: Administration/Operations
Author(s): Edith Crowe & Caroline Punches
Authorized by: Patricia Breivik & Jane Light
Date Written: 12/3/04
Date Effective: 12/3/04
Date(s) of Revision(s):


A. Gifts of Art Work Procedure
B. PD 2001-02: Presidential Directive Regarding Collecting and Installing Art at San Jose State University
C. XT-94: Criteria for Acquisition and De-acquistion of Art Works

XT-93 (supersedes)