The William Randolph Hearst Archive has contributed a collection of 2,050 images to Artstor, providing an intriguing perspective on the collecting passions of Hearst, the man best known to us as a newspaper baron, and notoriously immortalized on film as the unscrupulous “Citizen Kane.”
Blog Category: Collection release
An additional contribution of nearly 1,000 images has been made to the Rob Linrothe: Tibetan and Buddhist Art collection in the Artstor Digital Library, bringing the total to over 5,000.* Scholar/photographer Linrothe has provided this unique resource in collaboration with the Lucy Scribner Library, Skidmore College and Northwestern University.
The American Institute of Indian Studies (AIIS) has contributed an additional 5,094 images to the Artstor Digital Library, bringing their total to more than 69,000.*
Have you ever wanted a better understanding of how an artwork or architectural detail was originally intended to be viewed?
Artstor’s Virtual Reality Panoramas are a wonderful option for viewing works in situ–no travel required. These 360-degree panoramas of world architecture allow you to navigate the interiors of cathedrals, mosques, palazzos, libraries, castles, and more. Using Comparison Mode, you can study artworks alongside panoramic views of the spaces in which they are installed.
Today’s Open Access initiative by the Metropolitan Museum of Art and their generous partnership with Artstor help ensure that these images will reach scholarly audiences in more than 1,700 institutions worldwide. Nancy Minty, Artstor’s Collections Editor, explores some of the Met’s history, the materials in the release, and its implications for future study.
In 1872, the Metropolitan Museum opened its doors in a brownstone on Fifth Ave., which housed its nascent permanent collection of 175 paintings. The New York Evening Mail heralded the moment as the birth of the “royal infant,” and one of the founders William Cullen Bryant struck a redemptive tone in his opening address: “My friends, it is important that we should encounter the temptations to vice in this great and too rapidly growing capital by attractive entertainment of an innocent and improving nature.”1 Salomon van Ruysdael’s Drawing the Eel, 1650s, still a standout from the inaugural collection, typifies the folksy, wholesome imagery that bolstered Bryant’s mission.
Today, nearly 150 years later, The Met is among leaders worldwide with an encyclopedic collection that numbers more than 2 million objects, spanning 17 diverse curatorial departments and 5000 years, from antiquities to photography, and including masterworks in all fields. Its range may be documented by countless juxtapositions of outstanding works from diverse cultures, as for example, an ivory handle from ancient Egypt, Prancing Horse, ca. 1391-1353 B.C.E., an engraving by the German Renaissance artist Dürer, The Little Horse, 1505. and a monumental painting by Rosa Bonheur, The Horse Fair, 1853-55, each depicting horses, albeit of very different stripes.
The museum building itself has accrued around 20 successive structures or wings to the nucleus designed by Calvert Vaux in 1880, and it currently occupies more than two million square feet, equal to about 35 football fields (not including Breuer and Cloisters locations). Moreover, in 2016 it welcomed 6.7 million visitors.
Now in an unprecedented step among major American museums, The Met has made a major new foray into the global virtual space by sharing open content for 375,000 images of public domain works in the collection. ITHAKA and Artstor are proud to cooperate in this initiative along with Creative Commons and the Wikimedia Foundation. The implications of this move are significant. As Loic Tallon, the museum’s Chief Digital Officer has framed it “In our digital age, the Museum’s audience is not only the 6.7 million people who visited The Met’s three locations in New York City this past year but also the 3.2 billion internet-connected individuals around the world.”
The Society of Architectural Historians (SAH) has received a generous grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to develop the SAH Architecture Visual Resource Network (SAH AVRN) a dynamic online library of architectural and landscape images for research and teaching.
To develop content for SAH AVRN, SAH is collaborating with scholars and librarians from partner institutions, initially MIT, Brown University and the University of Virginia to contribute images and metadata to SAH AVRN, a shared resource that will be widely available. Initially images will be contributed to SAH AVRN by scholars at the same three institutions who have agreed to share thousands of their own images that were taken for research and pedagogical purposes. To develop the technology for this online resource, SAH is working closely with Artstor, building upon the existing Artstor platform for storage, retrieval, viewing and presentation of images, and to develop tools to be used in conjunction with SAH AVRN.
For a full description of the SAH AVRN project, please visit sah.org.
We are pleased to announce that the Jessica E. Smith and Kevin R. Brine Charitable Trust has given ARTstor a grant to build a themed collection on the story of Judith and Holofernes. This collection will be part of a larger project – The Judith Project – commissioned by the donor to enhance scholarship on The Book of Judith and its later lexical and iconographical traditions in Western culture from antiquity to the present.
As part of this project to promote new scholarship, approximately 30 international scholars were selected by the donor and an academic panel to present papers in a conference at the New York Public Library on April 17-18, 2008. The conference will be followed by scholarly research trips this summer, some of which will incorporate the capture of original photography for the ARTstor collection. In addition to the conference and this special ARTstor collection, The Judith Project will include a comprehensive bibliographic reference tool on the topos of Judith that is being created by the New York Public Library, as well as a wiki jointly created by the NYPL and ARTstor that will serve as a scholarly commons. By embracing technological innovation, The Judith Project intends to provide scholars with new tools for multidisciplinary, creative collaboration. Well after the project formally concludes, this special ARTstor collection will live on in the Library for ongoing study and scholarship. For more information about the project, please see: http://workshops.nypl.org/judith/
Through an agreement with the Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore and the Museo Opificio delle Pietre Dure (Florence, Italy), ARTstor supported the rich photographic documentation of the recently restored bronze doors on the east side of the Florentine Baptistery, universally known as the “Gates of Paradise” (in Italian, “Porta del Paradiso”). The sculptural relief panels of the “Gates of Paradise,” produced during the second quarter of the fifteenth century by the great Florentine sculptor Lorenzo Ghiberti (1378-1455), constitute one of the most important art works of the early Italian Renaissance. After more than twenty-five years of work, the restoration of Ghiberti’s famous “Gates of Paradise” is now complete. ARTstor sponsored the comprehensive photographic documentation of the Gates of Paradise in their newly restored state. This photographic campaign produced nearly 750 stunning, detailed photographs of Ghiberti’s relief sculptures in both their uncleaned and their restored states, all of which have been digitized by ARTstor and are available as part of the ARTstor Digital Library.
“These splendid new photos finally allow Ghiberti’s work to be seen and studied as the three-dimensional, sculptural masterpieces they are,” according to Gary M. Radke, Professor of Fine Arts at Syracuse University and Curator for Exhibitions of Italian Art at the High Museum of Art, Atlanta. “Never before have we been able to study Ghiberti’s works so clearly and in such exhaustive detail. Taken from a wide variety of angles and under lighting conditions that reveal the full subtlety of Ghiberti’s modeling and finishing, these images will transform thinking about Ghiberti for decades to come.”
We are pleased to announce that we have just released the final 30 images, depicting the cleaned Noah panel.There are 30 images of the panel in both black-and-white in addition to the existing images of the uncleaned panel. These comparative materials underscore the importance of the recent restoration campaign and its photographic documentation by ARTstor.
To locate these and other images from the Ghiberti campaign in the ARTstor Image Gallery most readily, search for “Ghiberti Quattrone Noah,” so as to retrieve only these new photographs (produced by the outstanding Florentine photographer, Antonio Quattrone).
For more information about this collection see the Ghiberti Gates of Paradise Collection page.
You may also be interested in “A peek behind Ghiberti’s Florentine Baptistery Doors.“
Metropolitan Museum and ARTstor Announce Pioneering Initiative to Provide Digital Images to Scholars at No Charge
In a new initiative designed to assist scholars with teaching, study, and the publication of academic works, The Metropolitan Museum of Art will distribute, free of charge, high-resolution digital images from an expanding array of works in its renowned collection for use in academic publications. This new service, which is effective immediately, is available through ARTstor, a non-profit organization that makes art images available for educational use.
“The Metropolitan Museum of Art has long sought to address the significant challenges that scholars confront in seeking to secure and license images of objects from the Museum’s collections,” stated Metropolitan Museum Director Philippe de Montebello in making the announcement. “We hope, through this collaboration, to play a pioneering role in addressing one of the profound challenges facing scholars in art history, and scholarly publishing, today.”
ARTstor’s Executive Director, James Shulman, added: “By taking such a bold step in supporting publications based on art-historical research, the Metropolitan is providing enormous leadership to the entire sector. Scholars – in higher education and in museums – have been struggling with the question of how digitization might help to enable, rather than hinder, scholarly communications. For all involved, it is obvious that, when faced with an important directional challenge, the Metropolitan is providing decisive leadership.”
Initially approached by the Metropolitan Museum in 2005 to develop this initiative, ARTstor has worked in close consultation with Metropolitan Museum staff to create its new service, entitled “Images for Academic Publishing” (IAP), which will make images available via software on the ARTstor Web site. Initially, nearly 1,700 images representative of the broad range of the Metropolitan Museum’s encyclopedic collection will be available through the more than 730 institutions that currently license ARTstor. Efforts to expand this accessibility are now underway and will be announced by ARTstor at a later date. For more information about ARTstor’s plans for its “Images for Academic Publishing” service, please send email to IAP@artstor.org.
ARTstor, a digital image library, was created in 2001 as a non-profit initiative of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. It is now an independent non-profit organization dedicated to serving education and scholarship in the arts and humanities. The more than 730 non-profit institutions currently participating in ARTstor are located in North America, Australia, and the United Kingdom.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art – founded in 1870 with a mission to collect, preserve, and display works of art spanning 5,000 years of world culture from every part of the globe, and to educate the public about art – is the most comprehensive art museum in the Western Hemisphere with a collection now including more than two million works of art.
In December 2006, ARTstor announced the completion of its project to visually document the recently cleaned bronze doors on the east side of the Florentine Baptistery, universally known as the “Gates of Paradise.” The sculptural relief panels of the “Gates of Paradise,” produced during the second quarter of the fifteenth century by the Florentine sculptor Lorenzo Ghiberti (1378-1455), constitute one of the most important art works of the early Italian Renaissance. The cleaning of Ghiberti’s famous bronze doors, which itself has required more than twenty-five years, is now richly documented in ARTstor through more than 900 stunning, detailed photographs of Ghiberti’s relief sculptures, including some panels in their uncleaned or only partially cleaned state, and in both color and black-and-white.
ARTstor has now also sponsored a tandem photographic campaign – executed by the outstanding photographer, Antonio Quattrone, – to document the so-called “competition panels” in the Bargelo museum.The panels are renowned relief sculptures depicting the “Sacrifice of Isaac,” created by Lorenzo Ghiberti and Filippo Brunelleschi in 1401-1402 in hopes of securing the commission to produce the new set of Baptistery doors now known as the “Gates of Paradise.” Eighty-five color and black-and-white photographs of the panels, offering a wide range of details and viewing angles, are now available in ARTstor in digital form.
Andrew Butterfield, a leading scholar of Italian Renaissance sculpture, describes his recent use of these new images in a seminar he is teaching at the Institute of Fine Arts of New York University: “On Monday I received word that Quattrone’s new photographs of the competition panels were online and on Tuesday I gave a presentation of them to the students in my seminar on Ghiberti. Over the course of two hours of looking and comparing, the students came to see Ghiberti and the origins of Renaissance art in completely new terms. Much – perhaps even most – of what has been said about the panels is wrong and demonstrably so. In the standard interpretation … repeated in lecture halls around the world, Brunelleschi’s panel is said to be revolutionary, experimental, the first work of Renaissance sculpture …, while Ghiberti’s is said to be “Gothic” …. Well guess what? This is almost exactly opposite of what the pictures of the reliefs show.”
To locate the new images of the competition panels in the ARTstor Image Gallery most readily, search for “Bargello Quattrone,” so as to retrieve only these new photographs. Limit your search results to either Brunelleschi or Ghiberti to focus on either artist.
You may also be interested in “A peek behind Ghiberti’s Florentine Baptistery Doors.“