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June 16, 2021

Celebrating Juneteenth with quilts: sewing freedom, unity, and joy

Photograph of cotton quilt

America Irby. Quilt. Image and data from The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. © 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

We was taught there’s so many different ways to build a quilt. It’s like building a house. You can start with a bedroom over there, or a den over here, and just add on until you get what you want. Ought not two quilts ever be the same. You might use exactly the same material, but you would do it different. A lot of people make quilts just for your bed, for to keep you warm. But a quilt is more. It represents safekeeping, it represents beauty, and you could say it represents family history. 1

Mensie Lee Pettway (b. 1939), on learning her craft from her mother America Irby.

Jennie Pettway and another girl with quilter Jorena Pettway

Arthur Rothstein. Jennie Pettway and another girl with the quilter Jorena Pettway. 1937. Image and data from The Library of Congress.

Romare Howard Bearden. Quilting Time. 1985. Image and data from the Detroit Institute of Art. Art © Estate of Romare Bearden / Licensed by VAGA, New York.

Juneteenth is an annual holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States, and we are celebrating with a virtual exhibition of African American quilts. June 19 observes and renews the call for freedom, justice, and equality in the African American community. From the period of slavery through emancipation and up to current times, the activities and output of quilters have embodied strength, bound the community, and bestowed beauty and warmth, echoing the spirit of the holiday. An archival photograph of two generations of the Pettway family sewing together, 1937, and the mosaic mural Quilting Time, 1986, by Romare Bearden attest to the community building/family bonding attributes of the tradition.

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June 3, 2021

Broadening horizons: Artstor collections 2020-2021

Tang Dynasty. Tomb guardian. early 700s. Glazed earthenware. Image and data from The Cleveland Museum of Art. CC0 1.0.

Extending our cultural scope and disciplinary reach

We are working to add new collections that extend Artstor’s cultural scope and disciplinary reach. This includes African, African American, and Asian content, and content in disciplines such as social justice and human geography, environmental studies, public health, and natural sciences. New additions centered on this growing diversity include: Barbara Anello: Khmer Sites; Arthur Szyk; Brooklyn Museum; Magnum Photos, and more.

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June 1, 2021

Artstor images now discoverable on JSTOR

We are currently working on integrating Artstor on JSTOR. When you search JSTOR today you will find Artstor’s 2+ million images in your results, bringing together critical scholarship and high-quality images on one platform.

As the year progresses, we will be adding tools for working and teaching with images, making your experience even better. We have several ways you can follow our progress, or you can simply sign up to get updates in your inbox.

We are doing this because we believe that by combining images with essential scholarship, you’ll strengthen the depth and quality of your research, make innovative connections, and spark unexpected discoveries.

Browse the Artstor collections on JSTOR | Try an image search on JSTOR

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May 4, 2021

Spring into Artstor

Painting of field

Grant Wood. Spring turning. 1936. Oil on masonite. Image and data from Reynolda House Museum of American Art.

Welcome to all new participants and welcome back to old friends. For a quick refresher on tips and tools, new content, and our growth at Artstor, check out these handy resources to get the lay of the land:

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April 28, 2021

New in Artstor: the Arthur Szyk collection

A landmark offering of 500 new images by one of America’s most celebrated political artists during World War II.

Drawing of Adolf Hitler appears on horseback, surrounded by skeletons, monsters, and corpses

Arthur Szyk, Walpurgis Night. New York, 1942. Pen, ink and colored graphite on paper. Image and original data provided by Irvin Ungar.

Watercolor painting of an artist drawing at his desk

Arthur Szyk, Ink and Blood (Self-Portrait). New York, 1944. Watercolor and gouache on paper. Image and original data provided by Irvin Ungar.

Scholar and author Irvin Ungar has recently contributed the Arthur Szyk collection to Artstor, consisting of 500 images by acclaimed World War-II era Polish-Jewish artist Arthur Szyk (b. 1894, Łódź, Poland – d. 1951, New Canaan, Connecticut). Below, Ungar and art historian Samantha Lyons, PhD, provide context on the artist’s life and career.

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April 13, 2021

Pleasurable and daunting: a wife’s work on her late husband’s archive

Art Historian Magda Salvesen, author of Artists’ Estates: Reputations in Trust, writes about the emotional aspect of her work as the curator of the estate of her husband, the American painter Jon Schueler.

Jon Schueler. Next Summer. 1966. Oil on canvas. Image and data from the Jon Schueler Estate.

“Art must take reality by surprise,” the writer Françoise Sagan said in a 1965 interview. With the arrival of Covid-19, however, I have frequently found myself considering the reversal of these terms.

The sudden closure of a Jon Schueler exhibition in March 2020, two postponements of other shows, the absence of studio visits by potential clients or gallery reps, and the inability of my assistants to return any time soon ironically created what I had long desired: open time, month after month, to work on the Jon Schueler Archive.

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April 6, 2021

A is for Animal: A is for April and the prevention of cruelty

Artstor is offering up a beastly alphabet in observance of this month, dedicated by the ASPCA to the prevention of cruelty to animals. You may be surprised at the creatures we can conjure.

A is for Anteater long in the nose

B is for Bear who wanders the globe

C is for Cat, because it must be

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March 31, 2021

New: Additional images from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD)

Victor Hugo. Vianden seen through a spider's web. 1871.

Victor Hugo. Vianden seen through a spider’s web. 1871. Pen, ink and wash over graphite and watercolor on vellum. Image and data from Allan T. Kohl, Minneapolis College of Art and Design.

Collection:
Minneapolis College of Art and Design Collection

Contributor:
Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD)

Content:
The Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD) has contributed 1,350 additional images to their collection in Artstor, bringing the total to 2,800. The eclectic teaching collection includes iconic works present in art history curricula. All images were selected with the assistance of Allan Kohl, Visual Resources Librarian.

Jean Delville. Portrait of Mrs. Stuart Merrill. 1892.
Jean Delville. Portrait of Mrs. Stuart Merrill.1892. Colored chalk on paper. Image and data from Allan T. Kohl, Minneapolis College of Art and Design.
Caspar David Friedrich. Owl in a Gothic Window. 1836.
Caspar David Friedrich. Owl in a Gothic Window. 1836. Pencil and sepia, black ink. Image and data from Allan T. Kohl, Minneapolis College of Art and Design.
Odilon Redon. Spirit of the Forest. 1880.
Odilon Redon. Spirit of the Forest. 1880. Charcoal and chalk on paper. Image and data from Allan T. Kohl, Minneapolis College of Art and Design.
Caspar David Friedrich. Owl on a Grave. 1836-1837.
Caspar David Friedrich. Owl on a Grave. 1836-1837. Pencil and sepia, black ink. Image and data from Allan T. Kohl, Minneapolis College of Art and Design.

The current launch provides an opportunity to highlight some esoteric selections in an intimate digital exhibition of 19th-century Symbolist and related works. From Victor Hugo, better known for his writings than his many renderings, Vianden seen through a spider’s web offers a veiled perspective of the Luxembourg town that sheltered him during his exile from France. The electrifying Portrait of Mrs. Stuart Merrill by Belgian artist Jean Delville, aptly titled La Mysteriosa, is the personification of the occult. Caspar David Friedrich’s majestic owls portend death, and between the two looms A Spirit of the forest, one of Odilon Redon’s beloved hybrid “monsters.” Finally, the lighter spirit of the American luminist movement animates an oil sketch by the Hudson River school painter Frederic Edwin Church.

Frederic Edwin Church. Hudson River Valley in Winter Looking Southwest from Olana. c. 1870-1880.

Frederic Edwin Church. Hudson River Valley in Winter Looking Southwest from Olana. c. 1870-1880. Oil and pencil on board. Image and data from Allan T. Kohl, Minneapolis College of Art and Design.

Relevance:
European, British, and American art and culture.

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March 9, 2021

New: Barbara Anello: Photographs of Khmer Sites and Monuments

Khmer. Bayon, Angkor Thom.

Khmer. Bayon, Angkor Thom. Late 12th-late 13th century. Sandstone, laterite. Image and data from Barbara J. Anello-Adnani.

Artist and art historian Barbara J. Anello has contributed more than 2,700 photographs of Khmer monuments and heritage, including current archaeological practice, to the Artstor Digital Library. While the content is both culturally and historically significant, and the images arresting and revelatory, the collection is amplified by detailed descriptions.

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