The Guggenheim Puts 109 Free Modern Art Books Online


Back in January, 2012, we mentioned that the Guggenheim (the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed modern art museum in NYC) had put 65 art catalogues on the web, all free of charge.

We’re happy to report that, between then and now, the number of free texts has grown to 109. Published between 1937 and 1999, the art books/catalogues offer an intellectual and visual introduction to the work of Alexander Calder, Edvard Munch, Francis BaconGustav Klimt & Egon Schiele, Fernand Léger, and Kandinsky. Plus there are other texts (e.g., Masterpieces of Modern Art and Abstract Expressionists Imagists) that tackle meta movements and themes.

Anyone interested in the history of the Guggenheim will want to spend time with a collection called “The Syllabus.” It contains five books by Hilla Rebay, the museum’s first director and curator. Together, they let you take a close look at the art originally housed in the Guggenheim when the museum first opened its doors in 1939.

To read any of these 109 free art books, you will just need to follow these simple instructions. 1.) Select a text from the collection. 2.) Click the “Read Catalogue Online” button. 3.) Start reading the book in the pop-up browser, and use the controls at the very bottom of the pop-up browser to move through the book. 4.) If you have any problems accessing these texts, you can find alternate versions on

You can find many more free art books from the Getty and the Met below.

Related Content:

Download Over 250 Free Art Books From the Getty Museum

Download 397 Free Art Catalogs from The Metropolitan Museum of Art

800 Free eBooks for iPad, Kindle & Other Devices

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Comments (18)
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  • Helen says:

    The picture that always stands out in my mind is by Edward Munch ” the Scream”. If epitomises the feelings one has when certain things in ones life becomes so unbearable that all you need to do is look at that picture and it truly defines ones feelings of utter hopelessness.n

  • Kate J Chase says:

    Bravo! This is what the Internet was meant to be – among other things: the universal body of greater knowledge and the dissemination of great ideas, bodies, works.

  • Marcia Feldon Borger says:

    Send news

  • Him says:

    Sharing the gifted beauty from the beauty

  • Annie Edney says:

    Outstanding! And invaluable to those interested
    In art making, viewing, collecting, critiquing …
    art anything really!

  • Jennifer Young says:

    Thankyou so much for this opportunity to explore great works from a number of brilliant artists & to learn their history in the world of Art. What a treasure trove you are offering all of us from around the world. These sort of gestures make me believe more in the goodness of humanity when we all get to share great works of art. I especially get excited by the paintings of Egon Schiele & Gustav Klimt & you certainly have done me justice!

  • Cherry Metz says:

    Wonderful memories of my visit to this sublime building and the exhibitions.Thanks for the opportunity to use this site.Such a great treasure trove.

  • Hester de Vos says:

    This is fantastic, thank you for this great idea! :Hester de Vos, Cape Town, South Africa.

  • Michele A May says:


  • Annalen Gall says:

    I am so happy.I feel you offered a treasure to enjoy and learn from.My wish to visit the Guggenheim museum comes true now,and I have all the time to enjoy,leisurely at home.Thank you.




    Ghulam Abbas Khaskheli

  • Suzi says:

    It’s a pity so few are about women who are artists

  • al says:

    Policy is good , unfortunately the history of mass accumulation of funds on the backs of workers once again is not stressed. The mine industry gets accolades but the workers providing the profits get no nod. Sorry my take is a downer.

  • Ron Blackledge says:

    I came across an article in the Washington Post that refered to the free library that pertained to Cars. I would love to fine it again. There was a whole series about cats starting with : Chums

  • S.N.sethi says:

    I am looking for modern art painting book or list of books

  • Aaron says:

    I’m not seeing where these books are free. Just looks like an online store.

  • Betsy says:

    Losing my big art books in Katrina was devastating. This helps!

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