Where we’ve been, where we are going

Past and Present



The Arts Libraries Society / Australia and New Zealand (Arlis/ANZ) was established in December 1975. It’s founding mission was to promote arts librarianship and co-operation with other national and international organisations in the sector.

It was initially called the Art Libraries Society, but became the Arts Libraries Society in 1980, after an amalgamation with the Sydney-based Museums, Arts and Humanities Group.

ARLIS/ANZ published a journal until 2008. It continues to hold a biennial conference, maintains this website and members meet regularly at the State Chapter level.

Arlis is an international society, with a large membership active in North America.


The society is keenly interested in exploring ideas and generating discussion on all facets of arts information management. We are committed to collaborating, knowledge-sharing and connecting among arts information workers in public libraries, higher education and training institutions, art galleries, museums and other arts organisations.

There is a National Executive which manages the society. Its members are drawn from one of the Chapters, with responsibility rotating every few years, after an AGM. The National Executive takes on the role of coordinating the upcoming conference, usually hosted in its home state.