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April 10, 2013

Documentary photographer Ami Vitale speaks about her work

For over twenty years, Panos Pictures has been using photography to communicate critical social issues and stories beyond the mainstream media landscape to new and diverse audiences. More than 30,000 of their images of contemporary global affairs are currently available in the Artstor Digital Library.

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In this Panos-produced video, Ami Vitale shares the story behind a photograph she took when she lived in Guinea-Bissau in West Africa.

Search the Digital Library for Ami Vitale and Alio to see this and other photographs she took of the Fulani child, or just for her name to find more than 1,000 of her poignant photographs.

You may also be interested in these other videos from Panos:

Stephan Vanfleteren speaks about his work

Carolyn Drake speaks about her work

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March 28, 2013

Artstor to help launch the Digital Public Library of America

Yupik Eskimo | Mask: The Bad Spirit of the Mountain | late 19th century | Dallas Museum of Art

Yupik Eskimo | Mask: The Bad Spirit of the Mountain | late 19th century | Dallas Museum of Art

Artstor is partnering with the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) to provide access to more than 10,000 high-quality images from six leading museums.

As part of its collaboration with Artstor, the DPLA will aggregate and make available data records and links to images from six major American museums: the Dallas Museum of Art, the Indianapolis Museum of Art, the National Gallery of Art (paintings from the Samuel H. Kress Collection), the Walters Art Museum, the Yale Center for British Art, and the Yale University Art Gallery. In addition to linking to the original contributing museum’s own website, each DPLA record will link to the image in Open Artstor, a new Artstor initiative that allows users to view and download large versions of public domain images.

The DPLA is a large-scale, collaborative project across government, research institutions, museums, libraries, and archives to build a digital library platform to make America’s cultural and scientific history free and publicly available anytime, anywhere, online through a single access point. As part of its two-year Digital Hubs Pilot Project, the DPLA is working with several large digital content providers—including the National Archives and the Smithsonian Institution—and seven state and regional digital libraries to make digitized content from their online catalogs easily accessible to all. The DPLA will celebrate the groundbreaking work of hundreds of librarians, innovators, and other dedicated volunteers in its collective effort to build the first national digital library platform on April 18 at the Boston Public Library.

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March 20, 2013

Spring mysteries: Botticelli’s Primavera

Sandro Botticelli | Primavera; Allegory of Spring | c. 1478 | Galleria degli Uffizi | Image and original data provided by SCALA, Florence/ART RESOURCE, N.Y.; artres.com; scalarchives.com | (c) 2006, SCALA, Florence/ART RESOURCE, N.Y.

Sandro Botticelli | Primavera; Allegory of Spring | c. 1478 | Galleria degli Uffizi | Image and original data provided by SCALA, Florence/ART RESOURCE, N.Y.; artres.com; scalarchives.com | (c) 2006, SCALA, Florence/ART RESOURCE, N.Y.

Spring is here! The return of sunshine inspired us to look at Botticelli’s Primavera, a masterpiece of the early Renaissance and arguably the most popular artistic representation of the season, even if – as we shall see – its interpretation remains inconclusive.

Botticelli painted Primavera sometime between 1477 and 1482, probably for the marriage of Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco, cousin of the powerful Italian statesman (and important patron of the arts) Lorenzo Medici. The date is just one of the many facts surrounding the painting that remain unclear. For starters, its original title is unknown; it was first called La Primavera by the artist/art historian Giorgio Vasari, who only saw it some 70 years after it was painted. While it’s generally agreed that on one level Primavera depicts themes of love and marriage, sensuality and fertility, the work’s precise meaning continues to be debated (a search in JSTOR led us to almost 700 results, with nearly as many differing opinions). Here’s what we think we know:

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March 9, 2013

On this day: Daylight Saving Time

Vincent van Gogh | Sower | 1888 | Rijksmuseum Kröller-Müller | Image and original data provided by Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Arts Archives/ART RESOURCE, N.Y.; artres.com

Vincent van Gogh | Sower | 1888 | Rijksmuseum Kröller-Müller | Image and original data provided by Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Arts Archives/ART RESOURCE, N.Y.; artres.com

It’s time to spring forward this weekend! Daylight Saving Time starts at 2AM Sunday morning, don’t forget to set your clock ahead one hour before you go to bed tonight. We made this slide show of beautiful clocks and watches to help you remember.

Case maker: Joseph Baumhauer; Clockmaker: Workshop of Julien Le Roy; Sculptor: Laurent Guiard | Mantel clock | 18th century | Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Case maker: Joseph Baumhauer; Clockmaker: Workshop of Julien Le Roy; Sculptor: Laurent Guiard | Mantel clock | 18th century | Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Swiss | Watch | 19th century | Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Swiss | Watch | 19th century | Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Ulrich Klieber III | Cannon Level and Sight, with Sundial and Compass | 1596 | Musée du Louvre | Image and original data provided by Réunion des Musées Nationaux / Art Resource, N.Y.; artres.com
Ulrich Klieber III | Cannon Level and Sight, with Sundial and Compass | 1596 | Musée du Louvre | Image and original data provided by Réunion des Musées Nationaux / Art Resource, N.Y.; artres.com
Sundial; view of the southeast face | Kilmalkedar, County Kerry, Ireland | Image and original data provided by Canyonlights World Art Slides and Image Bank.
Sundial; view of the southeast face | Kilmalkedar, County Kerry, Ireland | Image and original data provided by Canyonlights World Art Slides and Image Bank.
John Monnier | Skull watch with stand | 1812 – 1828 | Image and data from: Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
John Monnier | Skull watch with stand | 1812 – 1828 | Image and data from: Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
Designer: Jean-Antoine Lepine; Painter: Joseph Coteau, | Astronomical Mantel Timepiece | about 1789 | Image and data from: The Minneapolis Institute of Arts Collection
Designer: Jean-Antoine Lepine; Painter: Joseph Coteau, | Astronomical Mantel Timepiece | about 1789 | Image and data from: The Minneapolis Institute of Arts Collection

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February 28, 2013

A Woman’s Work

Milton Rogovin | Family of Miners series; Woman in field harvesting tobacco | 1983 | Milton Rogovin: Social Documentary Photographs; miltonrogovin.com

Milton Rogovin | Family of Miners series; Woman in field harvesting tobacco | 1983 | Milton Rogovin: Social Documentary Photographs; miltonrogovin.com

As a feminist, I often wonder how to approach events like Women’s History Month. Is it a celebration? A time for reflection? This year, I thought I’d meditate on an issue that has been popping up everywhere, from The Atlantic to the Academy Awards. 2012 saw a series of publications on women’s shifting role in the workplace, including Anne Marie Slaughter’s much-discussed essay, “Why Women Can’t Have It All.” Not to mention that, according to a recent article in The Huffington Post, the American workplace continues to be “really, really sexist.” In more specific terms, women still only earn $.77 to every dollar a man makes, and we make up only 4% of the S&P 500’s CEOs. 2013 also marks the 50th anniversary of the publication of Betty Friedan’s monumental book, The Feminine Mystique, which challenged notions of women’s work in the 1960s. What better time to think about how we define a woman’s work, across generations and cultures?

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February 26, 2013

If I Knew Then What I Know Now

Pantheon; Interior view #1 | 118-126 CE | QTVR Panoramas of World Architecture (Columbia University) | Visual Media Center; learn.columbia.edu

Pantheon; Interior view #1 | 118-126 CE | QTVR Panoramas of World Architecture (Columbia University) | Visual Media Center; learn.columbia.edu

By Dana Howard

True confession: I was a sporadic—and inattentive—user of the Artstor Digital Library. My high school was a fairly early adopter of Artstor. I used it a lot on those early years, but as I had more and more of my slides “in the can,” I stopped paying attention to the changes taking place in the Digital Library.

I would periodically run to Artstor when I was asked to do presentations at the last minute, (I found the ability to do a quick download of Image Groups to PowerPoint very helpful), but for the most part I was too busy to explore new tools and new collections as they were announced. I think I was typical for a high school user; I was busy teaching and felt constantly bombarded with new resources elsewhere.

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February 25, 2013

Remembering Caleb Smith

Caleb Smith and Cassy Juhl, Ginkaku-ji in Kyoto, May 19, 2010

Caleb Smith and Cassy Juhl, Ginkaku-ji in Kyoto, May 19, 2010

ARTstor celebrates the life and work of Caleb Smith, Director of the Media Center of Art History at Columbia University, who passed away suddenly on February 11, 2013 at the young age of 42. He was a generous and kind friend, colleague, and scholar.

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February 25, 2013

Karen Finley: “Straight from the gut”

Karen Finley | A Woman’s Life Isn’t Worth Much | 5/18/1990 | Originally at Franklin Furnace, New York, NY

Karen Finley | A Woman’s Life Isn’t Worth Much | 5/18/1990 | Originally at Franklin Furnace, New York, NY

March is Women’s History Month, the perfect time to highlight the work of Karen Finley, a world-renowned performance artist, author, and playwright whose work has addressed issues such as sexuality, abuse, and American politics from an uncompromising feminist perspective.

Finley came to national attention when her 1990 grant application to the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) was vetoed, along those of three other artists, because the content of her work was considered inappropriate. The artists sued and ultimately lost a Supreme Court appeal, but Finley was not deterred. As her struggles with the NEA were already in full swing in 1990, Franklin Furnace—in a bold move, as the organization itself was partly funded by the NEA—presented her installation, A Woman’s Life Isn’t Worth Much.

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February 20, 2013

On this day: The Metropolitan Museum of Art opens its doors

Richard Morris Hunt and McKim, Mead and White, original building; Kevin Roche, John Dinkeloo and Associates, renovations | Metropolitan Museum of Art; interior, Leon Levy and Shelby White Court | original building completed 1902; renovation completed 2011|New York, New York |Photographer: Ralph Lieberman

Richard Morris Hunt and McKim, Mead and White, original building; Kevin Roche, John Dinkeloo and Associates, renovations | Metropolitan Museum of Art; interior, Leon Levy and Shelby White Court | original building completed 1902; renovation completed 2011|New York, New York |Photographer: Ralph Lieberman

Happy 141st birthday to the Metropolitan Museum of Art! The Museum opened its doors to the public on February 20, 1872 (some 30 blocks below its current location). Today the Met is the largest art museum in the United States, boasting more than two million works in its permanent collection.

ARTstor is proud to collaborate with the Museum in sharing three collections in the Digital Library: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, with an excellent selection of almost 10,000 images from the permanent collection; The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Brooklyn Museum Costumes, with nearly 6,000 images of American and European costumes and accessories formerly in the Brooklyn Museum; and The Metropolitan Museum of Art: William Keighley, featuring nearly 4,000 images of European art and architecture, as well as photographs of the Met itself and the Met’s Cloisters museum and gardens. Additionally, in 2007, ARTstor and The Metropolitan Museum of Art launched Images for Academic Publishing (IAP) offering scholars high-resolution images for publication free of charge; the Museum currently makes almost 13,000 images available through the program.

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February 20, 2013

Documentary photographer Stephan Vanfleteren speaks about his work

For over twenty years, Panos Pictures has been using photography to communicate critical social issues and stories beyond the mainstream media landscape to new and diverse audiences. More than 30,000 of their images of contemporary global affairs are currently available in the ARTstor Digital Library.

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In this Panos-produced video, Stephan Vanfleteren talks about capturing a moment that he didn’t believe happened until he developed his own photograph.

Profile Voices: Stephan Van Fleteren from panos pictures on Vimeo.

Search the Digital Library for Stephan Vanfleteren and man taking a picture of his wife to see the image, or just for the photographer’s name to find more than 500 of his stunning photographs.

You may also be interested in: Documentary photographer Carolyn Drake speaks about her work

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