The National Gallery of Art announces the launch today of NGA Images, a new online resource that revolutionizes the way the public may interact with its world-class collection at http://images.nga.gov. This repository of digital images documenting the National Gallery of Art collections allows users to search, browse, share, and download images believed to be in the public domain.
"As the Gallery marks its 71st anniversary, it is fitting that we introduce NGA Images and an accompanying open access policy, which underscore the Gallery's mission and national role in making its collection images and information available to scholars, educators, and the general public," said Earl A. Powell III, director, National Gallery of Art. "In turn this supports research, teaching, and personal enrichment; promotes interdisciplinary research; and nurtures an appreciation of all that inspires great works of art."
Many of the open access images have been digitized with the generous support of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation.
Designed by Gallery experts to facilitate learning, enrichment, enjoyment, and exploration, NGA Images features more than 20,000 open access digital images, up to 3,000 pixels each, available free of charge for download and use. The resource is easily accessible through the Gallery's website, and a standards-based reproduction guide and a help section provide advice for both novices and experts.
Users may search by keyword in the Quick Search box on the home page of NGA Images, or they may browse the regularly updated "featured" image collections prepared by Gallery staff on topics such as 19th-century French Art or frequently requested works.
Other features for users include the ability to create one or more "lightboxes," or images sets, and to save, share, and download multiple images at a time. Users may add individual labels and notes to their lightboxes or to images within them. Links to users' customized lightboxes may be shared via e-mail or may be copied and pasted to social media sites.
Users may freely browse the NGA Images website and download screen- and lecture-size images without registering an account. Registration is required to use certain features of the NGA Images website, including saving and sharing lightboxes and e-mailing image links to others. Additionally, registration is required to fulfill certain image requests, including direct downloads of reproduction-ready images.
Open Access Policy for Images of Works of Art Presumed in the Public Domain
With the launch of NGA Images, the National Gallery of Art implements an open access policy for digital images of works of art that the Gallery believes to be in the public domain (those not subject to copyright protection). Under the open access policy, users may download any of these images free of charge and without seeking authorization from the Gallery for any use, commercial or non-commercial.
The Gallery's open access policy is a natural extension of its mission to serve the United States of America by preserving, collecting, exhibiting, and fostering the understanding of works of art at the highest possible museum and scholarly standards. In applying the policy in a global digital environment, the Gallery also expands and enhances its educational and scholarly outreach. The Gallery believes that increased access to high-quality images of its works of art fuels knowledge, scholarship, and innovation, inspiring uses that continually transform the way we see and understand the world of art.
View the full Open Access Policy at http://images.nga.gov/openaccess.
About the Collection
Masterworks by the most renowned European and American artists, including the only painting by Leonardo da Vinci in the Americas and the largest mobile ever created by Alexander Calder, await visitors to the National Gallery of Art, one of the world's preeminent art museums. The Gallery's collection of paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, sculpture, medals, and decorative arts traces the development of Western art from the Middle Ages to the present. Open to the public free of charge, the Gallery was created for the people of the United States of America by a joint resolution of Congress accepting the gift of Andrew W. Mellon in 1937.
The National Gallery of Art and its Sculpture Garden are at all times free to the public. They are located on the National Mall between 3rd and 9th Streets at Constitution Avenue NW, and are open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The Gallery is closed on December 25 and January 1. For information call (202) 737-4215 or the Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD) at (202) 842-6176, or visit the Gallery's Web site at www.nga.gov. Follow the Gallery on Facebook at www.facebook.com/NationalGalleryofArt and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ngadc.