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About the Collection

The Cincinnati Art Museum’s photobook collection is overseen by the Curator of Photography and housed in the museum’s Mary R. Schiff Library. This growing, open-access collection aims to inspire photographers, students of photography and fans of the medium by placing noteworthy new titles alongside acknowledged touchstones of the photobook genre.

From the early days of the medium to the present, books have been a key form photographers use to communicate, convey their artistic intentions, and influence the culture of photography. Today—as new technologies and an exciting landscape of independent presses put sophisticated publication in reach for more artists—photographers are revisiting fundamentals such as layout, sequencing, materials, and relationships with the written word and other media. The photobook collection represents this creative vitality, from self-published and small press titles from around the globe to the products of leading imprints like Steidl, MACK, and Aperture.

Generously funded by the Cincinnati Art Museum Friends of Photography and by individual donors including Thomas R. Schiff, the collection is named to honor another of Schiff’s long-term philanthropic commitments, FotoFocus, with which the museum’s photography program shares a dedication to enrich the photography community in Cincinnati and beyond.


Support the Collection

The photobook collection is the most frequently used resource in the museum’s library, inspiring local artists, casual browsers, and programs hosted by the museum’s Friends of Photography.

Donations to the photobook collection are gratefully considered. If you have individual books or a book collection for gift consideration, or wish to support the purchase of books, please contact [email protected].


Please note that some materials are accessible by request at the reference desk, and all must remain in the Library.



See current list of titles in the collection