Materials Collection

Materials Collection

Supervisor, Materials and Picture Collections: Alecia Underhill

The Material Resource Center is a collection of over 41,000 material samples arranged by composition. It is a hands-on, interdisciplinary, and encyclopedic collection for the exploration of materials used in architecture and construction, fine arts and design, apparel and interior furnishings, landscaping, product design, and printing. Categories include biocomposites, minerals, metals, ceramics, polymers and textiles. Students are encouraged to handle samples and items may be checked out for research or presentations. Investigate the possibilities of eco-friendly materials, antimicrobial materials, smart materials, and conductive materials—among many other properties. Explore the color library of fabrics and the many binders of product literature and samples. Browse the collection online at material, where you can search by composition, properties, material ecology, and other parameters.

The classroom space in the Materials Collection is available for RISD-related reservations through 25Live. The space accommodates 25 patrons with a large flatscreen monitor accessible via AirPlay or a direct cable connection. The space is open to walk-in traffic but class-based groups are encouraged to make a reservation.

Hours: 9:00am - 4:30pm, Monday - Friday


Browse the Materials Collection:

Manning Rare Woods

Materials Education and Research in Art and Design: A New Role for Libraries