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E MUSEUMS: The UK is the First Country in the World to Give Online Access to its National Collection of Paintings!!

The UK is the First Country in the World to Give Online Access to its National Collection of Paintings

courtauld-2Genevieve Gallibert, Still Life with Glass Objects, c.1929 (?). Oil on canvas, 50.3 x 65.1 cm. Collection: The Courtauld Gallery.

The UK is the First Country in the World to Give Online Access to its National Collection of Paintings

The Public Catalogue Foundation (PCF) and the BBC have completed their hugely ambitious partnership project to put the UK’s entire collection of publicly owned oil paintings online. We are the first country in the world to give such access to its national collection of paintings.

In total, 3,217 venues across the UK have participated in the project and 211,861 paintings are now on the Your Paintings website, which was originally launched in 2011.

Not only is the project yet another demonstration of the mission to make art accessible to everyone, everywhere, but the extent the project went to to locate the paintings is truly extraordinary,  As the Arts Council tell us,

The project covers paintings held by museums and galleries as well as works in universities, local councils, hospitals and even paintings held in fire stations, zoos and a lighthouse. The PCF began making a photographic record of the UK’s oil paintings in 2003. Typically 80 per cent of these paintings are not physically on display and the vast majority had never previously been photographed.

According to ArtDaily

The Courtauld Gallery [where the above painting is located] is now a part of Your Paintings, a hugely ambitious ten-year project to put online the United Kingdom’s entire collection of oil paintings, together with acrylic and tempera, in public collections. This makes the UK the first country in the world to give such access to its national collection of paintings. In total, 3,217 venues across the United Kingdom have participated in the project and 212,000 paintings are now on the Your Paintings website.

The Web Site

The website is easily navigable – it requires no particular computer skills!! It is also free of of the “flash and awe” that some Fine Art sites think is necessary. Each painting is shown clearly and the viewer is left alone to let the work speak for itself. The site shows the thousands of paintings from the UK’s national art collection, the stories behind them, and where to see them for real:

Artists

Your Paintings contains works by thousands of artists. We’ve 

Guided tours

Take a guided tour. Join leading figures in art and entertainment 

Galleries & Collections

This page contains information from our partners, the Public 

Leonardo da Vinci

Explore the paintings of Leonardo da Vinci in the National 

Paintings

Search by artist’s surname or what’s in the paintings. Start typing 

My Paintings

yourpaintings my paintings.

Where To See Them For Real

The Where to see them for real is one of the many impressive thinks about the site.  As a demonstration of the Where to See Them For Real feature, check out the site’s listings and links for the artworks located in  Wales:

Wales

Conclusion

The UK Art Collection online, through Your Paintings, is yet another demonstration of the commitment to make art accessible to the public. Moreover, it is done without fear that it will take away from people actually going to see the works. It is also done without fear that the institutions will lose revenue by doing so.

Indeed there is a genuine belief that the online experience will make more people want to go to see the real works, including people who would not ordinarily do so. Of course, this project also demonstrates the mission of bring art to people who would never be able to go to see the works in person. In the final analysis, this includes almost everyone in the world…

One comment on “E MUSEUMS: The UK is the First Country in the World to Give Online Access to its National Collection of Paintings!!

  1. What a great thing for Art lovers in any place in the world.

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