Saturday, May 31, 2008

More on Images for Academic Publishing

ARTstor continues to expand the Images for Academic Publishing (IAP) service. The recent addition of 1,700 images from The Metropolitan Museum of Art brings the number of images to over 3,300. IAP "seeks to facilitate scholarship in the arts by reducing the costs associated with publishing images in academic journals and similar publications. Image providers participating in IAP have supplied publication-quality images and agreed to make them available free-of-charge for use in scholarly publications. As a service to the community, ARTstor has developed the software to deliver these publication-quality images to users." Scholars affiliated with ARTstor participating institutions may access the IAP images within the ARTstor digital library by entering "IAP" in their search terms. Those working on a specific publication project but who are unaffiliated with an ARTstor participating institution may register for access to IAP. See ARTstor's IAP web page for more information. With initial content provided by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, ARTstor expects that the IAP program will include content from multiple sources.

This is an encouraging development in the context of the recent dialog about images for scholarly research and publication, as well the role of museums as gatekeepers controlling access to images. Kenneth Hamma's 2005 article, "Public Domain Art in an Age of Easier Mechanical Reproducibility," analyzes the benefits that museums would realize by providing broader access to images of works in their collections. Hilary Ballon and Mariet Westermann's 2006 report, "Art History and Its Publications in the Electronic Age," recommends organizing "a campaign to break down barriers to access and distribution of images, in all media and at affordable prices, for scholarly research and publication." Perhaps, along with the Victoria and Albert Museum's decision late in 2006 to drop reproduction fees for scholarly books and journals, The Metropolitan Museum of Art's move represents the beginnings of a culture shift within the museum community.

Image: "Wang Hui and Wang Shimin: Landscapes after Ancient Masters (1989.141.4)". In Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000–. (October 2006)

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Scholars Resource: High Quality Images for Teaching and Research

To create a copyright-compliant archive of top-quality images for teaching and research, the VRC buys images whenever they are reasonably available from vendors. Scholars Resource currently offers nearly 100,000 images for licensing at the University of Colorado, with over 25,000 more to be added within the next month. The addition of several new members to this vendor consortium makes purchasing beautiful images more convenient than ever (please note that the thumbnails here are visibly watermarked for public display, but not when licensed).

The VRC purchases images upon request for Art and Art History faculty. To build wish lists of images, visit the Scholars Resource web site, and link to create an account under the Log In for Expanded Features section. On that page, enter your e-mail address and a password of your choice. The next page asks you if you are affiliated with an institution - after choosing yes, enter "Boulder" in the keyword search field. This will generate the correct account for our department: University of Colorado: UCB, UCDHSC, and UCCS Boulder, CO United States. Select the institution, and enter the account information on the next page. Click the create account button, and you are ready to start your wish lists.

Under Orders and Wishlists, link to Manage your Lists (this section can also found in under the My Account link at the top of the page). In the Create New List section, enter the wish list title and any comments your want to share. Please limit each list to no more than forty images (perhaps categorized by theme or lecture). When saving your list, please select an option other than "Private List" so that the list will be visible to VRC staff. Upon finding an image of interest on the Scholars Resource site, open it by clicking on the image title, then simply click on the Add to List link underneath the thumbnail. Repeat for up to forty images per list. Note that when you create more than one list, new items are added to the first list as it appears on the Manage your Lists section. To add images to a previous/different list, simply drag the desired wish list to the top of the sequence of lists before adding images that list.

Please send an e-mail to Elaine Paul with the title of your wish list, or if you have any questions about this process.

Below is an overview of the Scholars Resource members with materials available currently on the web site. Three new vendors will be joining within the next month.  Stay tuned for details. This information is also available on the VRC web site (please scroll down to Commercial Image Providers).

The Archivision Digital Archive is a unique and growing collection of architectural images. The archive is intended for in-depth research & analysis by students of architecture, landscape architecture, urban design, archaeology, art and art history.

The Bridgeman archive includes images from museums primarily from western European collections. Highlights of the archive include the Bayeux Tapestry, the Isenheim Altar, the Ghent Altarpiece, and a wide variety of illuminated manuscripts from the Bibliothèque Nationale and other repositories, as well as more unusual works such as the Aztec Codex Borbonicus.

The Davis archive offers a wide range of works from American museums. Well known paintings like Van Gogh's Starry Night at the Museum of Modern Art and the broad selection of Japanese block prints at the Brooklyn Museum of Art illustrate the wealth and breadth of the archive. The Cuzco School, Mughal painting, and historic photography as well as contemporary works are important components of the archive.

The Hartill archive spans the prehistoric caves of Altamira to the wealth of contemporary buildings of the 20th & 21st centuries. Alec Hartill's photography of architecture also includes sculpture, stained glass, mosaic, etc. and his images range from vernacular examples to grand architect-designed structures.

Kenneth Garrett Collection – National Geographic
Scholars Resource is pleased to welcome a new vendor, Kenneth Garrett, with an initial group of images from Egypt and the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. Included are sculpted figures ranging from scribes to pharaohs, objects from the tomb of Tutankhamen, mummies, steles, and jewelry, as well as archaeological digs, quarries, and on-site tombs.

This archive, with photography by Dr. James B. Kiracofe, presently offers images from Spain and Mexico. Architectural examples from Spain include Roman bridges, theaters, and amphitheaters. Islamic examples include Seville's Alcazar and Granada's Alhambra as well as structures in Toledo, Merida, and Cordoba. From Mexico he offers extensive coverage of the Mayan and Zapotec sites. Spanish Colonial architecture in Mexico is well documented, particularly the churches and their distinctive Retablos.

The Saskia archive is well known for its extensive in-depth coverage of works from the major museums in Berlin, Dresden, Paris, Vienna, Madrid, Florence, and Rome. The core art history content provides a solid basis for building courses over time and the multitude of revealing details illustrating texture and technique are particularly useful to a variety of disciplines as well as to art historians and studio artists alike.

Images (L to R): Ron Wiedenhoeft (photographer), Mandala of Vajramrita, detail, from Ngor Monastary, Tibet, 1st half 16th century, Musée Guimet, Paris, Image Vendor: Saskia, Ltd., Scholars Resource Catalog Number Lte-0001; Ron Wiedenhoeft (photographer), Seated Figure with conical face, from Jos Plateau, Nigeria, 500 BCE-500 CE, Musée du Quai Branly, Paris, Image Vendor: Saskia, Ltd., Scholars Resource Catalog Number Jnc-0001; Ron Wiedenhoeft (photographer), Angkor: Khmer (Angkorean) capital and temple complexes, View of central tower, Main Sanctuary, Angkor, Cambodia, 1080-1107 and 1181-ca. 1220, Image Vendor: Saskia, Ltd., Scholars Resource Catalog Number Kca-0031.