In 2004, ARTstor announced and the National Gallery of Art (Washington, D.C.) announced that they would collaborate on the digitization and distribution through ARTstor of the approximately 4,000 high quality digital images of French medieval architecture and American architecture from the Clarence Ward Archive. This archive is the product of focused photographic campaigns undertaken by Ward (1884-1973) who was a distinguished professor of art history at Oberlin College for many years. The negatives produced in the course of these campaigns are invaluable, both to medievalists and students of American architecture.

Through this collaboration, ARTstor has now digitized the ca. 4,000 Clarence Ward large format nitrate negatives, richly documenting Romanesque and Gothic architecture in France and selectively documenting American architecture from Colonial times through the early 20th century. These two landmark archives will greatly enrich ARTstor’s value to a wide audience in the history of art and architecture and related fields.

“The Clarence Ward archive of photographs of medieval buildings is an immensely important source for high quality images of Romanesque and Gothic architecture,” attests Caroline Bruzelius, A.M. Cogan Professor of Art History at Duke University. “To many students and scholars, these photographs will already be familiar from Jean Bony’s book on Gothic Architecture in France as well as other scholarly publications. Clarence Ward looked at, and photographed, buildings with the eye of an architectural historian, so that his pictures are especially valuable for the history of construction technique and architectural design. Moreover, a good proportion of the photographs were taken before the destruction wrought by World War II.”

To browse these new ARTstor images, please click on “Image Gallery” on the ARTstor “welcome page” and then select “Clarence Ward Archive (National Gallery of Art, Department of Image Collections).” Or simply search the keyword phrase “Clarence Ward.”