The VCU Book Art Collection was established in 1979 through a collaborative effort between School of the Arts faculty Phil Meggs, Joan Muller and Davi Det Hompson and librarian Janet Dalberto. Today, it consists of nearly 4,000 items and is strongest in publications from the 1960s to the present. The collection encompasses all aspects of contemporary artists' publications, from inexpensive editions in the tradition of the "democratic multiple" to finely crafted artists' books. The collection also includes serials, exhibition catalogs and reference materials as well as sound and visual poetry. VCU Libraries also serves as a repository for the Women's Studio Workshop, the largest publisher of hand-printed and hand-bound artists' books in the United States.
The collection represents many disciplines, techniques and subjects and can serve as a source of ideas and inspiration for students.