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[LBJ Library photo by Ruth Goerger]

Photography of Museum Objects in Storage

The Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum [LBJ Library] recognizes the occasional need of institutions and the general public to obtain high quality photographs of museum objects that are not on public display. The museum staff will attempt to accommodate these requests by making objects in storage available for photography. However, due to personnel time constraints, the lack of equipment, and expertise, the requesting institution/individual is responsible for performing all of the necessary photography.  The following policy outlines the criteria for photographing objects in the museum collection storage area of the LBJ Library.

The museum does not offer or provide any photography services.  All photographs must be taken by either the institution/individual requesting the photography or a professional photographer.

All photography is by appointment only, and at the discretion of the museum staff. Appointments must be arranged through the Registrar’s Office (512-721-0199) at least two weeks prior to the desired date.

Appointments will be scheduled with a regard to the operations of the LBJ Library and the availability of museum staff. There will be periods of weeks when staff will be installing exhibits or engaged in other activities that require their full attention. At such times photography requests will be denied or deferred.

All photography must be accomplished during normal working hours (9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday). Museum staff are not available during weekends or federal holidays.

All photography projects will be limited to three hours. This time limit includes at least one hour of staff time dedicated to locating museum objects, preparing a space for photography, returning the objects to storage, and all other activities conducted prior to and after the photographer’s arrival and departure. The remaining time will be dedicated to the actual photography, so please plan accordingly.       

The museum does not provide any type of photography equipment. Photographers must supply all of the necessary photography equipment, including film, lights, backdrops, etc. It is the responsibility of the photographer to handle all financial transactions, including purchasing film, film processing, shipping and all other charges related to their particular project.

The limited amount of open space within the museum storage area dictates that the amount of photographic crew and photography equipment must be restricted to two (2) people (photographer and an assistant), two (2) lights w/stands, camera (non-video), tripod and backdrop. Because a large amount of bulky photography equipment poses a high risk to various items within the museum storage area, the museum staff reserves the right to inspect and approve all photography equipment before it enters the museum storage area. Video and film crews cannot be accommodated within the museum storage area and will not be granted access.            

If the services of a professional photographer are to be utilized, all arrangements must be made and paid for by the institution/individual contracting the photographer’s services. The LBJ Library is not responsible for any costs incurred by a photographer in the service of another institution/individual.  

All photography must be accomplished in the presence of a member of the museum staff and within the confines of the LBJ Library. Location of the shoot will be at the direction of the Registrar.

Neither photographers nor their assistants are permitted to handle museum objects. Only members of the museum staff are authorized to handle museum objects.

A large number of items within the museum collection currently have a variety of copyright restrictions attached to them.  When an item is being photographed for publication and that item is bound by copyright restrictions, the requesting institution/individual must obtain, from the holder of the copyright, written permission to publish the requested image. Proof of permission must be received in the Registrar’s Office before an appointment is scheduled.

It is the responsibility of the requesting institution/individual to determine and resolve all copyright issues.

Deviations from this policy or special requests must be submitted in writing to the Registrar’s Office.

To schedule an appointment or for further information, please contact the Registrar’s Office:

LBJ Presidential Library
ATTN: Registrar’s Office
2313 Red River Street
Austin, TX 78705-5702
(512) 721-0199