Exploring Rembrandt

Rembrandt, Raising of Lazarus, circa 1630-1632, Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Rembrandt, Raising of Lazarus, ca. 1630-1632, Los Angeles County Museum of Art (Photograph provided by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, www.lacma.org)

You may have heard that Artstor recently allied itself with ITHAKA, the parent company of JSTOR. (And in case you missed it, Artstor had a pretty funny April Fools’ Day story about it.) Now that two of the leading providers of visual and textual content have joined forces, we should expect to see further integration of their resources.

A new pilot project gives us a glimpse of where this partnership may be heading in the future. Exploring Rembrandt shows how images of the master’s work from Artstor can be linked to articles in JSTOR that discuss them. It is still a small prototype–addressing only five of Rembrandt’s paintings so far–but I think it is easy to imagine how useful this could be on a much larger scale.

New Collections and New Images Available in Artstor

Kwakwaka'wakw artist, Headdress Frontlet, pre-contact, Portland Art Museum, Portland, Oregon

Kwakwaka’wakw artist, Headdress Frontlet, pre-contact, Portland Art Museum, Portland, Oregon

Just in time for the holidays, Artstor has released a number of new and expanded collections in the Artstor Digital Library:

New Collections and New Images Available in Artstor

Renzo Piano Building Workshop, Kimbell Art Museum Expansion, 2007-2013, Fort Worth, Texas

Renzo Piano Building Workshop, Kimbell Art Museum Expansion, 2007-2013, Fort Worth, Texas

As the school year winds down, Artstor has been busy adding new images, particularly in the area of contemporary art and architecture. Take a look at these new and expanded collections in the Artstor Digital Library:

New Collections in ARTstor

Ishtar Gate

Neo-Babylonian, Ishtar Gate, 604-562 BCE, Vorderasiatisches Museum, Berlin

Here is a year-end roundup of some of the notable recent additions to the ARTstor Digital Library:

Also, images from the University of Delaware Library are now featured in the Digital Public Library of America (DLPA).

Art in the News

KodakIt was a slow start to the year, but things have picked up in the last week or so. Let’s start with the big news from January:

  • The bankruptcy of Eastman Kodak should come as no great surprise to anyone in this digital world, but it’s a sad loss nonetheless. Long before JPEGs there were Kodachrome slides, and long before Powerpoint there was the Kodak Carousel slide projector. Generations of art history students grew up on Kodak products.
  • Two deaths and a birthday (sort of): American Surrealist painter Dorothea Tanning (1910-2012) and artist Mike Kelley (1954-2012) both died last week. And January 28 would have been the 100th birthday of Abstract Expressionist painter Jackson Pollock (1912-1956).
  • And just when we thought the Dan Brown effect was finally on the wane, there’s a new revelation about Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa.

Public Domain Day 2012

Robert Delaunay, Saint-Séverin, 1909

Robert Delaunay (1885-1941), Saint-Séverin, 1909, Minneapolis Institute of Arts (photographed by Derek Churchill)

In addition to being New Year’s Day, January 1st every year is also Public Domain Day, a celebration of artists and authors whose works are entering the “public domain” because the copyright protection of those works has expired.

Technically, no major works will actually enter the public domain in the United States this year (or in any year until 2019), thanks to a series of complicated changes to United States copyright law since 1978. But in many countries, copyright protection ends 70 years after the death of the artist or author. So in those countries at least, works by anyone who died in 1941 would have passed into the public domain on January 1, 2012.

Artists who died in 1941 include a number of important late 19th- and early 20th-century figures, such as Émile Bernard, Maximilien Luce, William McGregor Paxton, John Lavery, El Lissitzky, Alexei Jawlensky, and Robert Delaunay (left).

The VRC’s website has a Copyright page with more information and links to additional resources.

Please note that I am not a copyright lawyer, so my comments here should not be mistaken for legal advice. You should always consult a copyright professional if you have questions about whether or not a particular work is in the public domain.

2011 Artists’ Obituaries

Last summer I posted links to obituaries for Cy Twombly and Lucian Freud. Let me add the names of a few more noteworthy figures in 20th-century art who have passed away since then:

Art in the News

A few more art-related items in the recent headlines:

  • An obituary for Cy Twombly, 1928-2011. The American artist, best known for making paintings that look like blackboard scribbles, died on July 5th at age 83.
  • An architectural review of Zaha Hadid’s Guangzhou Opera House in China.
  • An article on Samuel F. B. Morse’s Gallery of the Louvre. The painting, currently on view at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, is one subject in David McCullough’s new book, The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris.