On May 16, the Metropolitan Museum announced a new initiative called the Open Access for Scholarly Content (OASC) and released more than 400,000 images of public domain works on their website. Users can download the high-resolution files directly from the website for any non-commercial use, including scholarly publications. Users do not need to pay a fee and will not need to seek permission from the museum. Per the Met’s press release, “the number of available images will increase as new digital files are added on a regular basis.”
The Met joins several other institutions in making high-resolution digital image files of collection objects free available on the web, including Rijksmuseum, LACMA, and the Getty. The Met was one of the first participants in ARTstor’s Images for Academic Publishing initiative, but in order to use those images, the user needed to be affiliated with an institution that had an ARTstor subscription or request a temporary password. The new OASC program makes the images available directly to the public from the museum’s collections website.
For more information, visit the Met’s FAQ about the OASC initiative or explore their collections website. Images included in the initiative will be indicated
Via the Metropolitan Museum Press Room.
Google Goggles is a mobile app that uses images to search the Internet. Not long ago Google introduced their reverse-image search to the web; the concept of Google Goggles is similar, but takes functionality even further. For example: not sure who designed that famous building you’re seeing as a tourist in Rome? Having trouble translating that Italian dinner menu? Want more information about a book, logo, bottle of wine, or painting? There’s now an app for that!
Additionally, in collaboration with Google, the Metropolitan Museum of Art has made 76,000 two-dimensional works of art from their collection accessible through Google Goggles. If you want to know more about a work of art exhibited in the museum, you can take a picture and search for it via Google Goggles to quickly see authoritative and contextual information from the Met. This information will also display if you see a work belonging to the Met in a book, on a banner, or elsewhere in the world. Check out this video from the Metropolitan Museum of Art for an illustrated introduction to the partnership.
The app is free and available on both iPhone (iOS 4.0) and Android (2.1+) platforms. If you’ve already downloaded iOS 5.0 for iPhone, the app won’t work, but we hope that a fix for this is under development!
Via Technology in the Arts.
Last week, the Metropolitan Museum of Art opened its new Islamic wing: Galleries for the Art of the Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia and Later South Asia. The New York Times featured an interactive guide to the wing, including panoramic views of galleries which may be expanded to full-screen.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art launched a new website this week, complete with high-resolution images available for download (for educational purposes).To download a high-res image, either search or browse the collections. Select an individual work, then click full view. Click the symbol at lower right to “Download HD Image.” This will bring you to a new screen where you can either right-click (PC) or control-click (Mac) to save.
If you’re on a PC, you can also zoom to a detail in the full view and right-click to save it. If you have a MyMet account, images may be grouped in your account for later reference.
Last week The New York Times published an opinion piece titled “Opportunity on Madison,” or What the Met Should Do When It Moves into The Whitney. The author discusses The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s recent lease of The Whitney Museum’s Marcel Breuer building on Madison Avenue (to be vacated by The Whitney in 2015) and the Met’s decision to display collections of modern and contemporary art there.
I love the 1966 Breuer design. With its trapezoidal windows and stepped-back facade, it’s what the Guggenheim isn’t: starchitecture with the right amount of ego, meaning that it works for art. Almost everything looks good in it. And the Met’s residency, contracted to last at least eight years, seems like a great idea on paper. The Whitney Museum of American Art gets to keep its celebrated building, and the Met, which can never show more than a small fraction of its encyclopedic collection, gets some desperately needed space.
But the Met’s use of that space primarily for new art would be a big mistake.
What do you think? Should The Met utilize the space to house curated shows that include art from many eras, as the author suggests, or for contemporary and modern art, or something else?