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Elliott Erwitt. USA; NYC; Candice Bergen dancing at the Truman Capote B&W Ball at the Plaza Hotel. 1966. ©Elliott Erwitt / Magnum Photos

Elliott Erwitt. USA; NYC; Candice Bergen dancing at the Truman Capote B&W Ball at the Plaza Hotel. 1966. ©Elliott Erwitt / Magnum Photos

Truman Capote’s fame transcended his literary status; he was famous for being famous half a century before the rise of reality television and social media stars. A uniquely gifted writer, Capote also sought fame through publicity stunts, television appearances, and his friendships with both the social and Hollywood elite of the mid-twentieth century. Capote nurtured a persona based on being entertaining, funny, and quick to spread a rumor, attributes that would return to haunt him. (more…)

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Harriet Powers. Pictorial quilt. 1895-98. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Harriet Powers. Pictorial quilt. 1895-98. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

When the second wave feminist movement in the 1970s brought domestic art into the discussion of art history, textiles became a central topic. This led to the rediscovery of Harriet Powers, whose two surviving quilts currently hang in the Smithsonian and in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.

Powers, born a slave in Georgia in 1837, created the quilts after she was emancipated. She made use of appliqué techniques and storytelling often found in the textiles of Western Africa. While these textiles had typically been created by men, once the tradition was picked up in the United States women became the primary creators.

Powers became significant in academic circles more than half a century after her death as an exemplar of the influence and power of women’s domestic art and art inspired by traditions outside the Western canon, showing not only this type of art’s historical purpose and importance but its aesthetic influence and significance.

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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. (more…)

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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. (more…)

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Jeremy Horner. Devotees at the Krishna Temple of Shriji, during Lathmar Holi. 2011. © Jeremy Horner / Panos Pictures. Image and original data provided by Panos Pictures.

Jeremy Horner. Devotees at the Krishna Temple of Shriji, during Lathmar Holi. 2011. © Jeremy Horner / Panos Pictures. Image and original data provided by Panos Pictures.

Panos Pictures is contributing 1,511 additional photographs of contemporary global issues to the Artstor Digital Library, increasing our holdings from their archive to more than 33,000 images. Recent materials document some of the most significant events and forces of the last decade: the refugee crisis as it plays out in camps in Greece, Kurdistan, and Myanmar; the effects of Ebola; and the worldwide implications of climate change and drought.

Panos Pictures was founded as a photo agency in 1986 by the current director Adrian Evans (it was originally linked to Panos London, an organization that promoted the freedom of the media and proliferation of information and debate in developing countries). In 2011, the 25th anniversary of the agency, Evans expressed its ethic: “We believe in the photography of ideas. Not content with merely witnessing, Panos photographers seek out stories that matter with the aim of interpreting rather than simply recording. We are not afraid to take a position on current events or contemporary issues and offer perspectives that challenge commonly held assumptions.” The name Panos, a classical Greek term meaning beacon, defines the mission. For more than three decades Panos Pictures has worked with the commercial and nonprofit sectors, to campaign and to communicate with new and diverse audiences through a range of media including exhibitions, multimedia, books and video, and long-term documentary projects. (more…)

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Black iceberg. 1909. Image provided by Cornell University.

Black iceberg. 1909. Image provided by Cornell University.

Cornell’s Historic Glacial Images of Alaska and Greenland archive is a magnificent photographic assemblage of Arctic expeditions undertaken by Cornell faculty in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The majority of photographs document sweeping views of glaciers, their boundaries, and coordinates. Others portray explorers crossing the Arctic terrain by boat, foot, sled, and train, revealing the human effort involved in traversing the Arctic for scientific purposes. These expeditions sought to research the development and behavior of glaciers from a scientific perspective during a period in history when public interest in the Arctic surged. Today, the images in this archive have become a locus for interdisciplinary research.

Artstor’s Megan O’Hearn sat down with Cornell faculty members Matthew Pritchard, associate professor of geophysics, and Aaron Sachs, associate professor of history, to learn about their collaborative approaches to understanding and illustrating the process and impact of global warming using this incredible archive.

Meg O’Hearn: Can you give us a quick history of Cornell’s Historic Glacial Images of Alaska and Greenland archive?

Matthew Pritchard: The photographs are part of the Cornell archives and are particularly related to two Cornell faculty members. One is Ralph Stockman Tarr, who became a faculty member starting in 1892, and the other is one of his students who eventually became a faculty member, Oscar Von Engeln. The collection is an assemblage from different expeditions made by various Cornell faculty and students between 1896 and 1911. All those photographs were in the archives with the rest of the documents from these two people, but we weren’t aware of them until an Emeritus faculty in our department was cleaning his office and brought us a box of glass plates that had not been included in that collection.

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