Borrowing & Circulation

Locating Materials

Use the Library Catalog to find call numbers for materials. When you find the item record for the material you need, check the status line to make sure the item is not currently checked out. Also check which shelving area your item is located in.

There are a number of shelving areas in the art library: regular, oversize, reference (including reference regular, reference oversize, reference bookcase, reference overflow), locked stacks, cage, room 160A, and audiovisual. Ask at the circulation desk if you are not sure about area locations.

If the item is listed in the Library Catalog as on order or in process, use the OnOrder/In Process inquiry form to get more information.

Recalling Materials

When a book is checked out to another patron and you need it, you can recall it from the patron. When the book is returned you will be notified and you can pick it up at your designated pick-up library.

  • Online: Recall materials directly from the Library Catalog record by using the “Place Request” feature. For more information on how to place requests see the explanation at the bottom of the UW-Madison Library Catalog Help pages at
  • In person: Go to the Circulation Desk at Kohler Art Library with your currently valid UW ID or General Library System card and the call number of the item you need. The staff there can place the recall for you.

Borrowing Materials

In order to borrow materials from the Kohler Art Library you must present a valid UW-Madison ID, a UW System ID or a General Library System Card.

The loan periods vary depending on what type of card you have and the type of material borrowed. UW-Madison undergraduates may check out long-term materials for 28 day periods. UW-Madison faculty, staff and graduate students may check out long-term materials for a semester. Please check your My Library Account for the due dates of materials.

For additional loan information, call the Kohler Art Library Circulation Desk at (608) 263-2258.

Unless otherwise marked, item check-out periods are as follows:

Semester or 28 days (depending on patron category):
Regular size shelving
Oversize shelving

7 day:
Regular-size bound journals
(Note: an overdue charge of $1.00/day, $15.00 maximum per item, is assessed for these materials)

2 hour:
Reserve collection
(Note: an overdue charge of $2.00/hour, $35.00 maximum per item, is assessed for these materials)

In-library use only:
Flat shelving
Unbound journals
Cutter books
Cage, including oversize bound journals
Reference collection
Videos, CD-ROMs and Microforms
Locked stacks
Room 160A

A valid University ID or similar identification card will be held at the Circulation Desk while materials from Room 160A, Locked Stacks and Cage are in use by the researcher. Items from Room 160A are not available evenings and weekends.

Retrieving Materials

Book retrieval allows you to place a request for books in the library. Library staff will retrieve the materials and deliver them to the campus library most convenient to you. Book retrieval may be done directly in the Library Catalog using the “Place Request” feature.

You can expect delivery within 1-3 business days. When the item is available for you to check out, you will be notified by mail or you can check your My Library Account.

For more information on how to place requests see the explanation at the bottom of the UW-Madison Library Catalog Help pages at

Returning Materials

Reserve materials, fragile items, and items with less-than-28-day loan periods must be returned directly to the Kohler Art Library.

Open Return logo

Books on long-term loan can be returned to any campus library with an Open Return sticker (see image right) on its book return. The Kohler Art Library is an Open Return library.

Recalled items should be returned to the library they were borrowed from in order to avoid a potential fine. If you have a recalled item and it is overdue, a block will be placed on your account.

For more information on fines and holds see the UW-Madison Library Web Site at

Renewing Materials

Kohler Art Library materials (excluding recalled items and 7-day loans) can be renewed at least one time. All materials must be renewed or returned by their due dates to keep your library privileges active.

  • Online: Items can often be renewed online using the My Library Account feature. NOTE: You will want to check that the due dates have changed. If they have not, the books are not renewable and must be returned. If you have difficulty with online renewals, please contact the library for assistance.
  • In person: If you obtained due date receipts bring them or the books themselves to the Kohler Art Library Circulation Desk with your valid UW ID or borrowing card.
  • No phone, email, or mail renewals are allowed.

Library Cards

Persons not affiliated with UW-Madison may be eligible for a General Library System card. Applications may be made at the Card Application Window located in the lobby of Memorial Library, open from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm Monday through Friday and 10:00 am to 4:00 pm Saturday and Sunday.

If you have any questions about any of the cards that are issued please feel free to call the Memorial Library Circulation Office at (608)263-7360

  • UW Madison students, faculty, staff, and affiliates use their valid University ID to borrow library materials.
  • Appointments, such as honorary fellows need to obtain a borrowing card from the Card Application Window at Memorial Library.
  • UW System (other than UW-Madison) students, faculty and staff use the ID from their home institution to borrow library materials. To enter the Memorial Library students, faculty and staff from other UW campuses must obtain a day pass or Reference Pass.
  • OCLC and CIC faculty from other institutions must bring a photo ID and the card given by the home institution to the Card Application Window at Memorial Library to obtain a borrowing card. UW Faculty who wish to borrow from OCLC or CIC institutions need to contact Dineen Grow.

The following patron categories of users must obtain a Memorial Library issued borrowing card. Proof of affiliation and photo ID are required. All overdue charges and lost book fines must be paid before the card will be issued or renewed. All General Library System cards are valid through June 30th of the current fiscal year. Card renewals begin on June 1st each year. NOTE: A General Library System card does not entitle use of the Infolabs or remote access to licensed online resources.

Courtesy Card Holders

These cards are issued to:

  • Wisconsin State, Dane county, and city of Madison employees (with proof of employment)
  • Faculty and Students at Madison Area Technical, Edgewood and Beloit colleges. Beloit and MATC students need to bring a form from their college librarian.
  • Private college faculty in the State of Wisconsin (with proof of employment).
  • Donors to the library.
  • Wisconsin K-12 Public School educators (with proof of employment)
  • The spouses, domestic partners and children (ages 12-17) of UW-Madison faculty, staff and students.

Annual fee cards

These cards are issued to individual Wisconsin residents. Two proofs of Wisconsin residency are required, one of them a photo ID, as well as a $40.00 annual payment ($20.00 for residents 62 and older). Checks and credit cards (no cash) are accepted at the Card Application Window at Memorial Library.

Article & Book Delivery

Memorial Library provides several article and book delivery services to UW-Madison faculty (including emeritus), staff, and students with valid borrowing privileges. For an overview of the services and instructions on how to use these services please see Interlibrary Loan.

Interlibrary Loan contact form
B106D Memorial Library
728 State Street
Madison, Wisconsin USA 53706

(608) 262-1193

The office is usually staffed 8am–4pm, Monday through Friday. The Memorial Library reference staff can also help you in placing requests.

Distance Services

Distance Library Services are intended for UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff who reside outside of Dane County—including dissertators, students taking distance courses, and faculty on sabbatical.