Tuesday, February 23, 2010

WorldImages: 75,000 Images from California State University

Scholars and students who study visual culture should be aware of WorldImages, a free and growing resource offering images for use in teaching, scholarship, and research.  WorldImages is a remarkable project initiated and directed by Dr. Kathleen Cohen of California State University.  Over the years she has photographed works related to her teaching, first in the form of slides and more recently in digital format.  As the collection has grown to nearly 75,000 images, so have its contributors.  This is an impressive and inspiring model of collaboration, and a generous example of academic sharing.  As its title suggests, the image collection covers a very broad range of cultures and historical periods.  Check it out!

There are a number of ways to search the collection.  You can browse the collections by themed groups called portfolios, including community portfolios, which comprise interesting and useful sets compiled by community members.  You can also search by keyword, advanced, quick, date, and creator biography searches.  More information is available at the Help and Tutorials pages.

How can these images be used? "Faculty from many disciplines are using the images for research assignments, to create course study pages, to include in their lectures and to create on-line materials. Students are using the image database for study and research, for term papers, and to create collaborative multimedia presentations."

Image: Anonymous, Roman Republican/Early Imperial. Mosaic, Theater masks. Rome, Italy. ©Kathleen Cohen. Work licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.5 License.

Friday, February 19, 2010

U.S. National Archives in The Commons at Flickr

The U.S. National Archives has joined The Commons at Flickr.  Their high resolution offerings feature photographs by Ansel Adams, Mathew Brady, lots of images from the EPA's DOCUMERICA project (1971-1977), and many more historical photographs and documents.  You can view their collections here.  As with all images in The Commons, these images carry no known copyright restrictions.

Image: Erik Calonius, Interior of Graffiti-Marked Subway Car, 05/1973. From the DOCUMERICA project. U.S. National Archives.  From Flickr, no known copyright restrictions.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Smithsonian National Museum of American History Online

The Smithsonian National Museum of American History houses more than three million objects, and the museum is gradually building its online collection to share these treasures with you electronically.  You can browse the collections by such subjects as advertising, art, family and social life, food, natural resources, popular entertainment, religion, transportation, work, and many more.  You can choose to limit your search to items accompanied by images.  It's fun to browse through their "featured object groups," such as the National Numismatic Collection, the National Quilt Collection and The Ferris Collection of Prints.

 On the subject of art, the NMAH Web site states, "The National Museum of American History is not an art museum. But works of art fill its collections and testify to the vital place of art in everyday American life. The ceramics collections hold hundreds of examples of American and European art glass and pottery. Fashion sketches, illustrations, and prints are part of the costume collections. Donations from ethnic and cultural communities include many homemade religious ornaments, paintings, and figures. The Harry T Peters "America on Stone" collection alone comprises some 1,700 color prints of scenes from the 1800s. The National Quilt Collection is art on fabric. And the tools of artists and artisans are part of the Museum's collections, too, in the form of printing plates, woodblock tools, photographic equipment, and potters' stamps, kilns, and wheels."

Image: Mexican Guerrilleros, from the Harry T. Peters "America on Stone" Lithography Collection, National Museum of American History.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

ARTstor Travel Awards 2010

ARTstor is offering travel awards to support educational and scholarly activities in the amount of $1,500 each to graduate students, scholars, curators, educators, and librarians in any field in the arts, architecture, humanities, and social sciences.

From the ARTstor Web site: "To be considered for a research travel award, applicants must create and submit an ARTstor image group (or a series of image groups) and a single accompanying essay that creatively and compellingly demonstrates why the image group(s) is useful for teaching, research, or scholarship. The five winning submissions will be determined by ARTstor staff. These submissions will help ARTstor to understand better the uses that scholars and teachers are making of ARTstor's content and tools and will provide us with insights into how we can continue to improve our efforts to serve the educational community."

Applicants must be affiliated with an ARTstor subscribing institution.  The deadline to apply is April 1, 2010.  Winners will be announced May 1, 2010.  Awards will be made by June 1, 2010 ( awards are to be used by September 1, 2011).  For more information, rules, and application instructions, see the ARTstor Web site.

Image: nhanusek, Luggage, 2006. From Flickr, some rights reserved under a Creative Commons license.