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Jan van Eyck. Portrait of Giovanni(?) Arnolfini and his Wife. 1434. The National Gallery, London

June is the most popular month to marry, an excellent reason to take a look at one of the world’s most famous wedding paintings–although we ended up wondering if that, indeed, was what we were seeing.

At first glance, Jan Van Eyck’s Arnolfini Portrait (1434) appears to be an exquisitely rendered but otherwise straightforward depiction of a wealthy merchant and his wife. But take a second look (or third or fourth), and a more intriguing image emerges. The room in which the Arnolfinis pose is laden with images that signal wealth, have religious implications, or are just plain… odd. Continue Reading »

Robert Capa. Normandy; Operation Overlord; German soldiers captured by American forces. 1944. ©ROBERT CAPA © 2001 By Cornell Capa / Magnum Photos

Robert Capa. Normandy; Operation Overlord; German soldiers captured by American forces. 1944. ©ROBERT CAPA © 2001 By Cornell Capa / Magnum Photos

The more than 350,000 photographs in the Artstor Digital Library are not only there for the study of art—they also tell stories of our past. One of the best examples is that of Robert Capa’s breathtaking photographs of Omaha Beach on D-day in German-occupied France on June 6, 1944.

That day Western Allied forces landed on the beaches of Normandy in France and began the effort to liberate Europe from Nazi Germany. The invasion was originally planned for May 1stbut was delayed due to bad weather. Finally, on June 6th, 156,000 Allied troops stormed the beaches – losing between 2,400 and 4,000 lives – and Robert Capa was there to capture it on camera.

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Condé Nast is providing nearly 10,000 additional images to the Artstor Digital Library, bringing their total contribution to approximately 33,000. The release encompasses images from the Condé Nast Archive of Photography, selections from the Fairchild Photo Service, and signature cartoons from The New Yorker. Highlights of the new release include striking and innovative images from Vogue photographers Clifford Coffin and Louise Dahl-Wolfe, and ravishing food stills by Romulo Yanes.

The Condé Nast Archive is a leading repository of photography, featuring fashion, celebrity, and lifestyle shots from publications such as Glamour, Vanity Fair, and Vogue, dating from the 1890s to the present. The glamour and star power of fashion is represented in the commercial work of Edward Steichen and Horst P. Horst, through to contemporary takes from the runways of international style capitals, including the work of Patrick Demarchelier. The Fairchild Photo Service, comprised of more than three million photos gathered over six decades, is the fashion world’s preeminent image gallery. The New Yorker‘s cartoons are legendary for their incisive wit and for shedding light on the lives and foibles of the city’s dwellers from the Depression through to the era of “fake news.” The magazine’s cartoonists include renowned figures like Peter Arno, Roz Chast, Otto Soglow, William Steig, James Thurber, and Gahan Wilson. Continue Reading »

We’re thrilled to announce that we will be releasing an updated Digital Library this summer. This is a first step in improving our support of digital image-based teaching and scholarship, and toward the longer-term goal of creating an integrated platform experience for users of both the Artstor Digital Library and JSTOR – now both allied services under the ITHAKA umbrella.

Enhancements will include:

  • A new full screen IIIF image viewer with side-by-side comparison mode (no pop-ups or Flash required)
  • Simplified image group sharing: all registered users (previously limited to faculty) will be able to share image groups with other users at your institution
  • Increased web accessibility for users with disabilities
  • Shorter URLs for easier linking in LibGuides, course websites, emails, and more
  • Mobile friendly

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In 1967, the art critic Michael Fried wrote an essay about Minimalism called “Art and Objecthood”; this isn’t at all what he meant by it, but it’s the perfect description for the following links:

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We invited Marta Chudolinska, Learning Zone Librarian at the Ontario College of Art and Design University, to tell us about the collection of zines they are making openly available to everyone through Shared Shelf.

The OCAD U Zine Library is an ever-growing collection of self-published and handmade objects located in the Learning Zone at OCAD University. The Library contains an incredible range of zines (pronounced “zeen,” as in magazine), in terms of subject matter and form. Zines are a very flexible medium – they can be about anything that the creator wishes, often incredibly personal, political, or conceptual, and production can range from the cheapest, easiest options, such as photocopiers, to finely crafted, handmade approaches such as screen printing or letterpress.

The collection was started by former student Alicia Nauta in November of 2007 with hopes to inspire, educate and entertain, to encourage collaboration between OCAD U students and to open up the world of zines for readers and creators everywhere. When Alicia graduated, maintenance and development of the collection were continued by OCAD University Library staff. In 2009-2010, reference interns Laine Gabel and Marta Chudolinska devised a unique cataloging system based on best practices identified from other zine libraries and zine communities, which was later expanded to meet zine library cataloging standards as established by zine librarians across Canada and the US as xZINECOREx. Continue Reading »

Magnum Photos and Artstor are now sharing more than 35,000 additional images in the Digital Library, bringing our total to approximately 116,000* of the world’s most recognized photographs. The new release spans the globe from Alaska to the Amazon and Oman to the Arctic Circle.

Among the highlights are black and white shots of daily life in Europe by Raymond Depardon; Middle Eastern tensions and traditions observed by Abbas; elegant staged portraits from Marilyn to Einstein by Philippe Halsman; Martine Franck’s images of both ordinary people and luminaries; a vibrant sequence in India by Alessandra Sanguinetti; and Thomas Hoepker’s striking painterly landscapes. The collection also documents present-day concerns with photographs from geopolitical hotspots like Fukushima, Donetsk, and Aleppo. Continue Reading »