More and more art museums are letting patrons photograph the art.
“This is a far cry from the time when art museums banned or just barely tolerated photo-takers. Many restricted cameras to shield light-sensitive materials or protect the copyright of the owners who loaned works to an exhibition. “You are fighting an uphill battle if you restrict,” Nina Simon author of The Participatory Museum, told ArtNews in 2013. It was around that time when Instagram began to permeate every aspect of modern life, and images of artfully arranged food, pets, and kids—as well as actual art—flooded social media feeds.
Curators have come to embrace social media as a way for visitors to engage with art, explains Dr Kylie Budge, a senior research fellow at Western Sydney University. “It tips the balance of power and makes the experience more democratic on some levels,” she says. “There’s an element of co-creation involved. With platforms like Instagram available, the person experiencing the art now has the capacity to respond and create something instantly that communicates their reaction.” …”
“London’s Natural History Museum is digitising its specimens – all 80 million of them. “We need to record them to create data in aggregate,” says Vince Smith, the museum’s head of informatics. With the collection including everything from a blue whale skeleton to Martian meteorites, progress is understandably slow: since the project started in 2014, the museum has only digitised 4.5 per cent of the collection. Undeterred, the 11-person digital collections team has set its sights on recording 20 million specimens in the next few years with specially developed kit.”
“Last year, the blog highlighted the amazing and powerful ways in which galleries, libraries, archives and museums (GLAMs) connect their cultural heritage collections with the world through Wikidata. Since then, the Wikidata community working on heritage materials has grown significantly—and the recent Wikidata Conference highlighted just how powerful and cross-disciplinary Wikidata is becoming, allowing for a number of different audiences to learn more about their data.”
“The art collection at Philadelphia’s Barnes Foundation just got a little easier to see. The museum has announced a new Open Access program that will provide unprecedented access to its holdings by publishing over half of its objects online. Best known for its Impressionist and Post-Impressionist works, the museum’s holdings also include early Modern paintings, Old Masters, Native American fine crafts, and early American furniture and decorative art. Now, thanks to Open Access, 2,081 of the Barnes’s 4,021 objects have been published online. Of those, there are high-resolution images of 1,429 works available for download in the public domain”.
“The Digital Public Library of America is pleased to announce that John S. Bracken has been selected to be the next Executive Director of DPLA, beginning December 4, 2017. A demonstrated leader in the field of digital innovation with nearly two decades of experience at philanthropic foundations, Bracken will lead DPLA in its next chapter of development, as the organization embarks upon its fifth year of operation….Bracken joins DPLA from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, where he is vice president, technology innovation. He previously directed Knight’s journalism and media innovation program, before becoming vice president, media innovation. In these roles, he oversaw $100 million of technology funding, facilitated initiatives to enhance museum technology and library innovation, and supported projects to improve the creation, sharing, and use of information. Bracken also supervised the Knight News Challenge and the Knight Prototype Fund and helped to create a $27 million fund on artificial intelligence and ethics….”
“The Louisiana Digital Library (LDL) is an online library of more than 144,000 digital items from Louisiana archives, libraries, museums, and other repositories, making unique historical treasure accessible to students, researchers, and the general public in Louisiana and across the globe. The items in the Louisiana Digital Library are as diverse and interesting as the people and places in Louisiana, with photographs, maps, manuscript materials, books, oral histories, and more documenting the state’s history and culture….”
“The national digital platform is a way of thinking about and approaching the digital capability and capacity of libraries and museums across the US. In this sense, it is the combination of software applications, social and technical infrastructure, and staff expertise that provide digital content, collections, and related services to users in the US.
As libraries and museums increasingly use digital infrastructure to provide access to digital content and resources, there are more and more opportunities for collaboration around the tools and services that they use to meet their users’ needs. It is possible for each library and museum in the country to leverage and benefit from the work of other organizations in shared digital services, systems, and infrastructure….”
“Since 2010, Clemson University and the National Park Service have collaborated on the Open Parks Network, an Institute of Museum and Library Services funded project that has resulted in the digitization of over 350,000 cultural heritage objects and 1.5 million pages of gray literature housed in the libraries, museums, and archives of our nation’s parks, historic sites, and other protected areas. More than 20 national parks and other protected sites are represented in these diverse collections, as well as 2 state park systems and 3 university libraries. The Open Parks Network provides public access to high-resolution, downloadable files….”
“The handheld scanner looks like an old-school video game controller, a clunky throwback to the early days of Atari. But these mobile 3-D scanners used by the staff in the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis University Library Center for Digital Scholarship are actually very advanced technology, and they are changing the way we record recent history, ancient history and even the future….Proving its place at the front of the 3-D digital archiving crowd, the Center for Digital Scholarship recently received a grant from LYRASIS — a nonprofit organization for information professionals — to develop standards for how digital archives are recorded….”