Hello everyone. It is my understanding that you are all incoming Ph.D students in the History of Art & Architecture Department, right? Well, first of all I’d like to welcome you to the University of Pittsburgh. I hope I will be seeing many of you at our libraries. I hope that take advantage of the great resources ULS has to offer to you and your research. Hillman Library is usually overrun by our undergraduate population for study, but I do not want to make you feel like Hillman is not welcoming of graduate students; we are here to serve you guys too. With that, are there any preliminary questions that you have, about the library or our resources? Okay, lets get started then. Today I will present to you a database that I hope is already familiar to you, if not, will be familiar to you as you continue your graduate career here at Pitt. How many of you have a TAship? Good! Well, you will definitely use ARTstor while you teach. ARTstor is an excellent resource for just about anybody, but it primarily focuses on serving the academic art community.
Now, as many of you might or might not know, ARTstor is a non-profit organization that holds hundreds of image collections – so it’s not just one image collection. They accept collections from any non-profit educational institution into their repository. There is no fee to contribute images and institutions do not need to buy a subscription to become contributors. The University of Pittsburgh is actually a contributing institution and has contributed our History of Art & Architecture collection that comprises of over 55,000 images. Our collection is most strong in Western architecture, painting, and sculpture, but it also has a strong Chinese and Japanese concentration.
Part of the current, ever deepening divide between the arts & humanities and the sciences communities is the technological crux. Whereas the sciences have fully embraced the vast technological advances and immersed their scholarly publishing almost completely in electronic form, the arts & humanities have generally, if you want to say, “lagged behind”. Part of why this is so is because of the nature of the scholarly work each community deals with – art and art history criticism is mostly textual and image representation based and the sciences depend on the construction of figures, graphs, and charts that are otherwise easier to access and easier to make electronically. So with that said, why should you use a database like ARTstor when instead you can simply do a Google image search to get the image you need? Well, first of all, the images you will have access to on ARTstor are higher quality images. The granular quality you are able to get on Google might sometimes be as good as ARTstor. But it really isn’t a guarantee what kind of quality you can get on Google. The images provided on ARTstor are all contributed by reputable institutions that are sharing their own image collections in this repository; so basically, you’re getting the same kind of quality these institutions are able to provide their own onsite patrons. With ARTstor, you are able to have better accompanying metadata of the image, whereas in Google, you might get questionable, if any, information about the image. And lastly, as hopeful and aspiring art academics, who will dedicate a lot of time and effort to research in the art community, you should all support an online database that is dedicated to the very community you are a part of! I think there should be a better sense of an online community for the arts & humanities to close the gap a little between the sciences and arts.
Demonstrate:How to create log-inShow simple searchAdvance search; can search by four different categories: Geography, Classification, Collection, and Featured Groups; results refinementImage icons – explain what they mean; image zoom; image metadata; selection of part of an image; saving it; collating images to form collection to export onto PowerPoint; save and export citations.The one thing that can perhaps be improved on ARTstor is their lack of metadata control – there is no form of language standardization about the information they accept with the images, some images come with more metadata than others. ARTstor does ask for a general guide as to what they expect to get from the contributing institutions like title, size, date, media; but things like subject headings are sometimes provided, and sometimes not.
There is a way for users to download and print high resolution images for scholarly or academic publishing purposes, and that is possible through IAP, Images for Academic Publishing. IAP is a recent initiative taken on by ARTstor in partnership with the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Bryn Mawr College. 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 you guys might know, art image publication is extremely costly, with varying scale prices depending on size, if the image is black and white or color, and so on. So IAP is a wonderful initiative to reduce costs in academic art publication. So far, IAP currently offers 6,700 images from The MET’s collection and 3,900 images from Bryn Mawr.
ARTSTOR: DIGITAL IMAGE REPOSITORY DATABASE By: Elvia Arroyo-Ramirez ULS Instruction Librarian March 4, 2011 firstname.lastname@example.org
A brief history Began in 2001 with a grant from the Mellon Foundation Became fully independent in 2003; went live 2004 Started with UCSD’s slide collection As of current (December 2010/January 2011): 1,250,000 digital images (US); 1,040,000 (Int’l) 1,119 participating US institutions Including the University of Pittsburgh 215 international institutions
Why not use Google Images? Higher quality images Institutionally trusted images Promotion of the art database community Be scholarly, people… Better, more reliable metadata Ability to cite and export images properly