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The Rijksmuseum Puts 125,000 Dutch Masterpieces Online, and Lets You Remix Its Art

The Rijksmuseum Puts 125,000 Dutch Masterpieces Online, and Lets You Remix Its Art
The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam is one of the grand European museums. Home to many of the Dutch masters (Rembrandt’s Night Watch, which seems to glow from its center, and Vermeer’s Milkmaid, to name just a few), the museum is located on the city’s Museumplein, surrounded by the smaller Vincent Van Gogh museum and modern Stedelijk. All those masterpieces are now available for close-up view online at the Rijksmuseum’s digitized collection. But the Dutch are a whimsical people, so it seems right that, in digitizing its collection, the museum went a step further than further. By visiting the museum’s Rijksstudio, art lovers can create their own “sets” of Rijksmuseum works. All of this can be done with the blessings and support of the museum, which provides links to sites that offer various forms of printing on demand. What better way to make the collection accessible to the public? Related Content: Rembrandt’s Facebook Timeline Google “Art Project” Brings Great Paintings & Museums to You

The National Gallery Makes 25,000 Images of Artwork Freely Available Online No surprise that in “Masterworks for One and All,” an article about how museums have begun to offer free, high-quality downloadable images of works from their collections, the New York Times’ Nina Siegal brings up Walter Benjamin. The preoccupations of the philosopher behind “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” may seem more relevant than ever in these days of not just mechanical reproduction, but universal, developed-world ownership of the means of mechanical reproduction — and nearly instantaneous, effortless mechanical reproduction at that. Many rights-holders, including certain museums, have effectively decided that if you can’t beat the mechanical reproducers, join ’em. “With the Internet, it’s so difficult to control your copyright or use of images,” Siegal quotes the Rijksmuseum’s director of collections as saying. Related Content: Google Launches a New “Art Talks” Series: Tune in Tonight Download Hundreds of Free Art Catalogs from The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Read 700 Free eBooks Made Available by the University of California Press The University of California Press e-books collection holds books published by UCP (and a select few printed by other academic presses) between 1982-2004. The general public currently has access to 770 books through this initiative. The collection is dynamic, with new titles being added over time. Readers looking to see what the collection holds can browse by subject. The curators of the site have kindly provided a second browsing page that shows only the publicly accessible books, omitting any frustrating off-limits titles. The collection’s strengths are in history (particularly American history and the history of California and the West); religion; literary studies; and international studies (with strong selections of Middle Eastern Studies, Asian Studies, and French Studies titles). Sadly, you can’t download the books to an e-reader or tablet. Rebecca Onion is a writer and academic living in Philadelphia. Related Content: 30 Free Essays & Stories by David Foster Wallace on the Web

The Virtual Natural History Museum - Bringing Evolutionary Education out of the Stone Age - Walacea In 2012, the Earth Science Teachers’ Association (ESTA) of the UK wrote an open letter to professional palaeontologists asking for their help in producing teaching materials for their classrooms. They were having difficulty in gaining access to enough fossils or high quality replicas to help illustrate their lessons. They suggested that the provision of good quality, copyright-free images of fossils would be “extremely beneficial to school teachers”, and “the development of interactive web-based resources and palaeontological-themed games and activities” would help to capture the imagination of school pupils. To answer this request, we came up with The Virtual Natural History Museum (V-NHM): an educational, multimedia-sharing website with a fun and engaging interface. Museums aren’t just public displays, they also play an important role in research, education and the curation and conservation of artefacts. What would be the best way to display virtual fossils? Claire Morley Virtual Fossils

Download 35,000 Works of Art from the National Gallery, Including Masterpieces by Van Gogh, Gauguin, Rembrandt & More As a young amateur painter and future art school dropout, I frequently found myself haunted by the faces of two artists, that famously odd couple from my favorite art history novelization—and Kirk Douglas role and Iggy Pop song—Lust for Life. Vincent van Gogh and Paul Gauguin, above and below respectively, the tormented Dutch fanatic and burly French bully—how, I still wonder, could such a pair have ever co-existed, however briefly? How could such beautifully skewed visions of life have existed at all? Van Gogh and Gaugin’s several self-portraits still inspire wonder. My younger self had the luxury of seeing these particular two up close and in person at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC: Van Gogh’s gaunt and piercing visage, Gauguin’s sneering self-parody. There you’ll find works by another obsessive Dutch self-portraitist, Rembrandt van Rijn, such as the lush 1659 painting below. Browse the various collections, including one devoted to self-portraits. Related Content:

LA County Museum Makes 20,000 Artistic Images Available for Free Download The Los Angeles County Museum of Art houses the largest American collection of art west of Chicago. Developed as an “encyclopedic” museum—its collections represent nearly every human civilization since recorded time—LACMA’s eclectic holdings span from art of the ancient world to video installations. Like all great public collections, LACMA sees its mission as providing the greatest possible access to the widest range of art. Two years ago LACMA made a relatively small number of its image holdings available for free download in an online library. This represents about a quarter of all the art represented on LACMA’s site. LACMA’s online collection (80,000 images altogether, including restricted use and unrestricted) is sorted by the usual curatorial terms (“American Art,” “Art of the Pacific” and so on) but that’s just one of many filtering options. But the collection can be searched more narrowly by object type and curatorial area. Related Content: Discover Ansel Adams’ 226 Photos of U.S.

The British Library Puts 1,000,000 Images into the Public Domain, Making Them Free to Reuse & Remix Earlier this week, Oxford's Bodleian Library announced that it had digitized a 550 year old copy of the Gutenberg Bible along with a number of other ancient bibles, some of them quite beautiful. Not to be outdone, the British Library came out with its own announcement on Thursday: We have released over a million images onto Flickr Commons for anyone to use, remix and repurpose. The librarians behind the project freely admit that they don't exactly have a great handle on the images in the collection. You can jump into the entire collection here, or view a set of highlights here. To learn more about this British Library initiative, read this other Open Culture post which takes a deeper dive into the image collection. Related Content: The Rijksmuseum Puts 125,000 Dutch Masterpieces Online, and Lets You Remix Its Art The Getty Puts 4600 Art Images Into the Public Domain (and There’s More to Come) The Digital Public Library of America Launches Today, Opening Up Knowledge for All

Open Access Journals Search Engine (OAJSE) New digital application enhances visitors’ museum experience Summary The new HeritageApp aims to add a new, interactive dimension to the experience of visiting museums and heritage locations in Flanders Developed by Faro, the government of Flanders’ heritage agency, and the Swiss company Vidinoti, the ErfgoedApp (HeritageApp) may soon make audio guides look like relics from the past. With the ErfgoedApp, additional information about artworks and locations in front of visitors is now just a quick scan away. At the app’s launch in Antwerp’s M HKA museum, eyes of the attendees were, understandably, glued to their smartphones and tablet. As part of the demonstration, they watched videos, listened to audio fragments, played games, examined pictures and read information about the Turkish artist Hüseyin Bahri Alptekin related to a M HKA exhibition. Flemish culture minister Sven Gatz, also present, emphasised that “the ErfgoedApp is the first of its kind”. English version coming

The Getty Adds Another 77,000 Images to its Open Content Archive Last summer we told you that the J. Paul Getty Museum launched its Open Content Program by taking 4600 high-resolution images from the Getty collections, putting them into the public domain, and making them freely available in digital format. We also made it clear — there would be more to come. Yesterday, the Getty made good on that promise, adding another 77,000 images to the Open Content archive. The Getty also dropped into the archive another 4,930 images of European and American tapestries dating from the late 15th through the late 18th centuries. All images in the Getty Open Content program — now 87,000 in total — can be downloaded and used without charge or permission, regardless of whether you’re a scholar, artist, art lover or entrepreneur. You can start exploring the complete collection by visiting the Getty Search Gateway. For more information on the Open Content program, please visit this page. Related Content:

The Getty Puts 4600 Art Images Into the Public Domain (and There's More to Come) Not long ago, I went over to the Getty to see the J. Paul Getty Trust’s President and CEO James Cuno in live conversation with Pico Iyer, one of his favorite writers as well as one of mine. Cuno, himself the author of books like Whose Culture? “Why open content? Related Content: 40,000 Artworks from 250 Museums, Now Viewable for Free at the Redesigned Google Art Project LA County Museum Makes 20,000 Artistic Images Available for Free Download The Rijksmuseum Puts 125,000 Dutch Masterpieces Online, and Lets You Remix Its Art Rolls Out Huge Archive of Fine-Art Images and an Intelligent Art Appreciation Guide Free: The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Guggenheim Offer 474 Free Art Books Online

New Robert Rauschenberg Digital Collection Lets You Download Free High-Res Images of the Artist's Work After the waning of abstract expressionism, Robert Rauschenberg’s exuberant prints, paintings, sculptures, and three-dimensional collages he called “Combines” rejuvenated the New York art world and helped bring pop art to prominence, anticipating Warhol’s experiments. And now students of twentieth-century American art can connect with all of the artist’s work in the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art’s permanent collection without setting foot in the Bay area, thanks to SFMOMA’s Rauschenberg Research Project, which allows users to download high res images of the museum’s Rauschenbergs. Research materials—including commentary, interviews, essays, and more—accompany each image. via Metafilter Related Content: Rauschenberg Erases De Kooning