Art, Graphic Design & Art History: Web Resources
Web sites for Art and Art History
There are excellent web resources for art and art history research and study. Many national museums and libraries have online collections, so you will find other relevant resources by searching the Internet for museums in specific countries. The resources linked below were chosen specifically for excellent visual content, but include only resources in English.
- AccessCeramicsExcellent image database developed by staff at the Watzek Library at Lewis & Clark College in Portland focuses on contemporary ceramic work. Search by method, material, artist name, object type, and even temperature! This is a beautiful site with great inspiration for ceramic artists.
- Bibliography of the History of Art/International Bibliography of ArtA comprehensive tool for Western art history research, provided by the Getty Research Institute.
- Cooper Hewitt MuseumThe Cooper-Hewitt collection is international in scope, includes both historic and contemporary design, and includes one-of-a-kind and mass-produced items. The collection focuses on drawings, prints and graphic works; product design, textiles, and wall coverings.
- Google Art ProjectA unique collaboration of over 150 acclaimed art museums in 40 countries. The search capabilities are very clunky and it is recommended to use the Search by Museum category to browse. Create and share your own "collections."
- Guggenheim Museum – Online CollectionsExcellent resource for the study of international contemporary art and artists.
- Metropolitan Museum of Art -- Heilbrunn Timeline of Art HistoryOutstanding resource for research on many art historical periods including ancient Egypt artifacts, Greek and Roman art, Byzantine, Renaissance, Asian and Central Asian art, 19th Century art movements, fashion, weaponry, and many other topics up to the early 20th century.
- Metropolitan Museum of Art Online CollectionsOutstanding online collections from the Met. Categories include: Islamic Art, Decorative Arts, American Painting & Sculpture, European Painting, the Costume Institute, Drawings & Prints, Africa, Oceania & the Americas, Egyptian Art, Musical Instruments, and others.
- Mother of All Art and Art History LinksDeveloped by the University of Michigan School of Art and Design, Mother of All is an extensive set of links to research resources, image collections, online digital art, art schools, art departments, and art museums.
- Museum of Art & Design (was American Craft Museum) Online CollectionsFantastic resource for the study of American craft and its international influences, including ceramics, textile arts, jewelry, and domestic arts.
- Museum of Contemporary Art, Los AngelesExcellent resource for contemporary art, artists, and thematic exhibits.
- Museum of Modern Art Online LearningOutstanding resource for research on modern art and its influences worldwide, up to the present.
- The New MuseumExcellent resource on contemporary art, artists, and cutting-edge thematic exhibits.
- SmarthistorySmarthistory.org is a free and open, not-for-profit, art history textbook using multimedia to deliver unscripted conversations between art historians about the history of art.
- Smithsonian Museum of American ArtExcellent collection of material about art and artists in the US from multiple national collections housed at the Smithsonian Institute.
- Tate CollectionBeautifully designed online library of the Tate's collections covering art from 1500 to contemporary works. Searchable by artist name, genres, subject terms, with excellent images and descriptions.
- Whitney Museum of American Art Online CollectionsExcellent resource for research on contemporary art and artists in the US.
Evaluating web resources
Find an interesting website using Google or another browser? Not sure if you can use it for academic research? It is not always easy to determine if information on the World Wide Web is credible. However, the guidelines below will help you understand clues about the reliability of web resources.
Who is the author of this page?
What are their credentials?
Are they affiliated with an institution?
Does the site display this information?
What is the purpose of this page?
Does the author state the goals for this site?
Does the content inform, educate, persuade, or rant?
If the author is affiliated with an institution (government, university, business, etc.), does this affiliation bias the information presented?
Does the site have page sloppy layout, include misspellings or typos?
It's always a good idea to cross-reference information no matter where you find it.
Do graphics add or detract from the content? Is there inflammatory content?
Is the information complete or fragmented?
When was this page created? Is there a revision/creation date?
Do the links work?
Is the page maintained and up-to-date?
For more in-depth information on evaluating websites, see: Evaluating Web Pages: Techniques to Apply & Questions to Ask from UC Berkeley - Teaching Library Internet Workshops