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Search Tips: A Guide to Using the Collection Online

Welcome to the Nevada Museum of Art online database. This database represents art, archival, and library holdings, which are organized into six separate collections (categories). Entries are added on an ongoing basis.

Using “General Search”

“General Search” consists of one main search box, three pull-down menus, two check boxes, and viewing options. Use these options to broaden or narrow your search and to organize the results.  

To conduct the “General Search” across the entire database, type a term into the main search box and click “Search.” The database will conduct an open-ended search across multiple fields in all collections, whether art, archives, or library. The number of records found will appear by collection in boxes below, which you may click on to see the specific results. 

“General Search” includes keywords related to topics, geographic names, corporate names, and personal or family names. Keep in mind that partial terms (such as “port”) will provide results such as portfolio, Portland, or Portugal. Also, special characters (diacritical marks) must be included for the search to work properly, except for personal, family, or corporate names.


How to build a search using pull-down and check-box options

  1. Enter search term in the main search box.
  2. Choose a field (or leave it at “All Fields”) from the middle pull-down menu to the right of the main search box.
  3. Choose your sortation preference from the second pull-down menu to the right of the main search box.
  4. Choose which collection (or leave it at “All Collections”) you wish to search using the “FILTER BY:” pull-down menu below the main search box.
  5. Check or leave unchecked the “Results with Images” and “Recent Acquisitions” boxes.
  6. Choose your preferred view on the right just below the “Search” button.   
  7. Press the “Search” button.
  8. View the results. Results will appear immediately below the search options.  
  9. Click on any record to see the detail page. Click the “BACK TO SEARCH” button on the left to return to the Search Menu.
  10. To conduct another search, begin the process anew. The search bar will always be visible except on a detail record.


Guide to search categories

All fields

This search option will conduct a search across all fields within the records. 


This searches the names of artists, authors, or archive creator or compiler. Search names using the “Last, First” format.  With regards to special characters (diacritical marks, which are glyphs added to letters), you may search with or without them. For example, search by Snæbjörnsdóttir, Bryndís or Snaebjornsdottir, Bryndis.  


This searches the names of peoples or tribes, nationalities, or ethnic or language groups. 


This searches the records with the term in the title entered in the main search box.   


This search covers the materials from which an object is made. It includes broader terms such as ‘oil’, ‘watercolor’, ‘paper’, ‘canvas’, ‘wood’ or ‘stone’, as well as more specific terms such as ‘linen’, ‘vellum’, ‘bark’, ‘granite’, ‘silk’, ‘lithograph’, leather’, ‘ceramic’, or ‘marble’, etc. 

In the archives, the medium may include terms such as ‘envelopes’, ‘articles’, ‘slides’, ‘letters’, ’manuals’, ‘documents’, ‘photographs’, ‘maps’, or ‘diaries’, etc. 

The library does not have this field. 

Accession Number

Accession numbers are applicable to art collections and archives.  

Art collections follow this format: YEAR.2DIGIT#. This may look like 2007.07, or 2018.12. Accession records in the art collection begin in 1949.  

Archives follow the following format: CAE4DIGIT#. CAE is on every record, the following 2 digits are the year, and the next 2 digits are the sequential indicator. For instance, CAE1305 is the 5th archive in 2013, or CAE1609 is the 9th archive in the year 2016. It is essential to follow the correct form, including punctuation, as specified here.  

ISBN (International Standard Book Number)

This field refers to the International Standard Book Number and refers to the library only. If you know the ISBN number for a book, article, DVD, or broadside, etc., you may use this field. Enter the number without dashes or spaces 

Object types

Terms for object types can be used for all three collections. These terms are broad categories such as ‘painting’, ‘sculpture’, ‘document’, ‘slide’, ‘book’, ‘photograph’, etc.  

Series Level, Folder Level, and Item Level

These search options are for archives only. Since archives are sorted from the largest grouping to the smallest, this option helps narrow down the type of record you seek.