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The 700s (The Arts) are a really fun and diverse section of the collection, and there’s a lot more going on here than you might expect. For example, “the arts” refers to more than just museum pieces. Whether you’re looking for a book of Monet’s finest paintings, a knitting guide, or even a book about the Cleveland Browns, you’ll find it in the 700s!

700 (The Arts)

We’ve been through this eight times already, so it should come as no surprise that the base classification of 700 would be a sort of “catch all” for books on the arts. Consider these your “art 101” titles, which will give you a nice overview of different types of art and what makes art…well, art. Scattered throughout are books about museums and curating collections, as well as Art History.

710 (Area Planning and Landscape Architecture)

The books in 710 cover landscaping and overall design of various spaces. Think libraries, museums, hospitals, parks, playgrounds, and even cemeteries. Here, you can also learn about plants chosen specifically for foliage and appearance (think tree lawn trees here in Ohio). This of course, is not to be confused with 580 (plants), which approaches the topic from a scientific perspective. In 710, those magnolia trees are simply a small part of a larger design. Likewise, as we talk about buildings and structures, we’re looking at them from the perspective of design, so we shouldn’t confuse these books with the 690s, which are focused on construction. Other topics in the 710s include fountains, topiary work, and wildlife reserves.

720 (Architecture)

While 710 focuses on area planning, 720 narrows in on the architecture. From remodeling and architectural design to types of buildings (temporary structures are 720.444 and skyscrapers are 720.483), you everything you could have wanted to know about buildings of all kinds can be found here. 721 talks about various building materials (again, this is more of a survey and a study– construction with said materials will be found in 690). And if you want to learn about architecture from a wide array of time periods, you’ll find it in 722-724. The rest of the 720s covers types of buildings such as public structures (725), religious buildings like churches, temples, and mosques (726), schools, research facilities, and libraries (727), and residential buildings, hotels, farmhouses, cabins, and even houseboats (728)!

730 (Sculpture and Related Arts)

If you’re interested in sculpture, you’ll find everything you could want to know in 730. The earlier classifications cover topics like materials, tools needed, and various techniques, such as sculpting metal through bending, beating, and welding, as well as modelling in clay, wax, or plastic. 731 also includes molding, casting, firing, and baking, as well as various forms of sculpture like doorways or fountains, masks, monuments, and totem poles. 732-735 continues on with sculpture by time period and geographic location. 736 covers carvings in wood, stone, precious gems, ivory, bone, horn, shell, and amber, as well as wax, ice and snow, soap, sand, and even paper techniques like origami.

Next we have 737 which focuses on numismatics and sigillography, which I’m sure I don’t have to define for any of you. But, since I didn’t know what the heck it meant, I looked it up. Numismatics covers coins and similar objects while sigillography is all about seals (like the kind pressed into wax). In this section, you’ll find books about religious medals, amulets, talismans, buttons, pins, coins, signets, and stamps. 738 covers ceramic art (including porcelain, stoneware, and mosaics). And finally, 739 is art metalwork, such as jewelry, utensils, watches, clocks, and armor.

740 (Graphic and Decorative Arts)

When I was younger, I wanted to be an artist. And the 740s were some of my favorite books. Here’s the drawing books, comics and graphic novels, drawing techniques and methods, graphic design, blueprints, handicrafts (such as wood-burning, paper-craft, beads, soft toys, and dollhouses), calligraphy, costume jewelry, stencils, and the floral arts. Likewise, you’ll find book on textile arts (think sewing, knitting, crocheting, printmaking, and rug-hooking); interior decoration (ceilings, floors, draperies, woodwork, wallpaper, and rugs); glass (including stained glass and mirrors); and furniture (including light fixtures and picture frames).

750 (Painting)

750 covers painting (and paintings) focusing on technique, use of color, and geographic location. So, whether you want to study Rembrandt or be the next Rembrandt, you’ll want to check out this section.

760 (Printmaking and Prints)

The 760s focus on printmaking, which is the process of taking a stencil, block, or stamp and using it to produce multiple copies of the same image. This includes engravings on wood, linoleum, and metal blocks, as well as multicolored prints such as chromolithography and screen printing (serigraphy). There are also books on engraving, etching, and the collection and reproduction of prints. You’ll even find books on the collection of stamps (philately) which was a hobby of my grandfather’s!

770 (Photography, Computer Art, Cinematography, and Videography)

If you’re interested in photography or film, the 770s are the section for you. The 770s incorporate a fun variety of topics, from photography techniques, procedures, and tools to special types of photography, such as daguerreotype. Further into the 770s, we can find books on holography, digital photography, digital art, and computer graphics. 777 is dedicated to cinematography and videography, including animation (and stop motion) and special effects. And if you’re simply looking for photography collections to pore over, consider 779, which is dedicated to photographic images.

780 (Music)

I always enjoy listening to good music, but I’m not at all musical. But, if you have a passion for the topic, you’ll find everything you need in 780. The earlier classifications cover biographies of composers and various styles of music, followed by various musical forms, principles of music, and elements, such as time, rhythm, meter, etc. 781 continues by touching on various genres, such as rock music, blues, or sacred music. Next is 782-783, which covers vocal music, such as opera, chant, Gospel, hymns, and carols; while 784-788 is about instruments and instrumental music. And finally, 789 covers composers and musical traditions.

790 (Recreational and Performing Arts)

And perhaps one of the most varied aspects of the collection can be found in 790, which covers “Recreational and Performing Arts”. This covers everything from public performances such as circuses, traveling shows, motion pictures, radio, and television; stage presentations such as opera, musicals, ballet, and plays; board games, card games, and video games; magic tricks; and sports and other physical activities such as cycling, weight lifting, baseball, football, snowboarding, boating, swimming, horse racing, fishing, hunting, and more!


I'm the Reader's Advisory Librarian at WPPL. My interests include old horror films, classic novels, manga and anime, paper-crafting, and plants. If you like my suggestions, you can request personalized recommendations from me on My Librarian page.