The J. Paul Getty Museum, in Southern California is the home of a huge collection of art at its two locations. Earlier this month, they began offering high resolution downloads of thousands of images from the collection, free to use, modify, and publish through their Search Gateway.
The Getty is following the lead of a growing number of museums, institutions and organizations with similar offerings, such as Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Harvard University and the National Gallery of Art. From the release:
“The Getty was founded on the conviction that understanding art makes the world a better place, and sharing our digital resources is the natural extension of that belief. This move is also an educational imperative. Artists, students, teachers, writers, and countless others rely on artwork images to learn, tell stories, exchange ideas, and feed their own creativity. In its discussion of open content, the most recent Horizon Report, Museum Edition stated that “it is now the mark—and social responsibility—of world-class institutions to develop and share free cultural and educational resources.”
As part of the download, the Getty asks for a description of how the images will be used and for credit.
The offering includes portraits by Nadar, Atget, Degas, Tina Modetti and Julia Margaret Cameron.
Search the collection here.