Category Archives: Digital Library of the Week

Many libraries around the world are making their materials available via the Web. Here we recommend those we think will be interesting to the UArts community.

Digital Resource of the Week: Sheet Music Consortium

The Sheet Music Consortium is a collaborative project of libraries that have digitized their sheet music collections. Currently, there are 19 libraries’ collections in the database, including Temple University, Duke University, and the Library of Congress.

Come on the Nashville Tennessee by Walter Donaldson, 1916
Come on the Nashville Tennessee by Walter Donaldson, 1916

The Consortium allows you to browse all of these collections at once. Search by collection, composer or lyricist, or subject. Almost everything in the Consortium is accessible for viewing. You can limit your search option to “digitized content only” to only view what is available online.

The Consortium also gives you the option to drag records into a virtual personal collection and then save or email the records.

Digital Resource of the Week: National Gallery of Art Learning Resources

The National Gallery of Art has terrific web resources for students and teachers of visual art. NGA Learning Resources offers learning packets, media, and online resources for teaching everything from 15th century European art to 21st century American art. Search by resource format, subject, or artist name. For instance, there is a teaching packet on Art Since 1950, a podcast of an interview with artist Jim Dine, and a slideshow of the Golden Age of Chinese Archaeology. Many of the resources are available as a pdf, podcast, or a webpage. Others you can request to borrow from the National Gallery of Art – just create an account! It’s free!

 

Girl Seated by the Sea by Robert Henri 1893
Girl Seated by the Sea by Robert Henri 1893

Looking for more ideas on teaching visual arts? Check out the UArts Libraries subject guide on Art Education. Also, search the catalog for the subject heading Art – Study and Teaching.

 

Digital Resource of the Week: Retronaut

Want to explore a history of life from way back when? Retronaut will take you there. British ex-museum curator Chris Wild has been culling images, videos, music, and more from public and private archives.

from Rephotographing Budapest by Soren's Lie
from Rephotographing Budapest by Soren's Lie

The website is organized by decade but you can also search by categories (like art, fashion, and music) or clusters (such as steampunk or Through the Lens of…photography). You can also add your own content and leave comments, enhancing the visual collection and adding memories.

Want to learn more about the past? UArts Libraries has a great subject guide for 2oth Century Research by Decade. This will help you find books and articles on just about any event in the 20th century!

Digital Resource of the Week: Craft in America

Craft in America is an excellent resource for anyone interested in the history, techniques, and preservation of American arts and design. The organization is dedicated to educating students of all ages about historical and contemporary craft.

Dorothy Gill Barnes, Ella’s Mulberry Marked, 1995, Courtesy of Arkansas Arts Center
Dorothy Gill Barnes, Ella’s Mulberry Marked, 1995, Courtesy of Arkansas Arts Center

The website introduces contemporary artisans in all craft media: clay, wood, metal, glass, fiber, and paper/book arts. A section is dedicated to each material, linking to articles on the craftsmanship and history, as well as providing a list of craft galleries, museums, and magazines. The education section discusses craft by themes such as memory and community. The website gives access to virtual exhibitions.

The organization also produces a TV series that airs on PBS. Each episode focuses on a topic and how crafters in each material approach that topic. You can watch much of the series on PBS’ website and also get access to episodes of the show by downloading PBS’ free iPhone or iPad App. Or, borrow the first three episodes from the UArts Libraries.

Finally, check out the book Craft in America published in 2007. It’s full of beautiful color images representing all crafts, focusing on American craft communities and education. The UArts Libraries has a copy, of course!

L: Beth Lipman, Candlesticks, Books, Flowers and Fruit, 2010, Courtesy of Heller Gallery   R: Beth Lipman, After You’re Gone, 2008, Courtesy of Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence
L: Beth Lipman, Candlesticks, Books, Flowers and Fruit, 2010, Courtesy of Heller Gallery R: Beth Lipman, After You’re Gone, 2008, Courtesy of Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence

Digital Resources of the Week for Animation

The Society for Animation Studies is an international group focused on scholarship about animation history and theory. It was founded in 1987 by Dr. Harvey Derenhoff, a prolific author of animation blogs, articles and books who teaches animation at the Savannah College of Art and Design’s Atlanta campus. The Society’s website and Derenhoff’s personal website are great resources for anyone interested in animation.

The Society publishes an open access, scholarly e-journal called Animation Studies. They also have an Animation Bibliography which is constantly updated with links and citations to scholarly sources.

Video still from Tony Sargs and Herbert Dawley's 1921 "The First Circus"
Video still from Tony Sargs and Herbert Dawley's 1921 "The First Circus"

Want to watch some animation? Check out two freely available sets of iTunes podcasts. One is the Origins of American Animation from the Library of Congress. The films are from 1900 to 1921. Also see Pixar: 20 Years of Animation, available from MoMA. You can watch selections from movies such as Cars, Toy Story, and Monsters, Inc.

The UArts Libraries has terrific resources on animation. To start, check out our animation subject guide.

Digital Resource of the Week: Tate

The Tate Collection is comprised of the National Collection of British Art, the National Archive of British Art, and international modern art. With four physical locations in England, the Tate provides a wonderful website for exploring its collection from anywhere.

Each work of art in the collection has its own information page on the website, with images when possible. Search by artist or do a subject search. They also provide an interactive glossary of art terminology. You’ll find works by artists such as Alexander Calder,  Damien Hirst and Sophie Calle.

Damien Hirst's Away from the Flock (1994)
Damien Hirst's Away from the Flock (1994)

Tate Channel lets you watch films by artists (including Rafael Bonachela’s Muse), interviews with artists (such as Mike Nelson), and watch artist performances.

Raoul Hausmann's The Art Critic (1919–20)
Raoul Hausmann's The Art Critic (1919–20)

Tate Papers is an online journal of scholarly articles about artists, museum studies, and visual culture. Each essay has selected terms and artists’ names hyperlinked to online images of example artwork. They also include bibliographies. Read the current issue or browse by category. There are papers on artists such as Richard Serra and topics like The Sublime Object.

The Tate also publishes books and the University Libraries has many of them. Search by author for Tate Gallery or Tate Modern (Gallery) to see a variety of excellent books on artists and art movements.

Digital Resource of the Week: American History Online

American History Online lets you simultaneously search over 350 digital collections of historical primary resources. You can search all the collections at once to find relevant images, newspaper articles, diary entries, and more. Or, browse through one collection at a time. You’ll discover the Ball State University Department of Theatre and Dance Costumes, the Sam DeVincent Collection of American Sheet Music, and the George Winter Collection of Writings and Paintings.

Poster for Federal Art Project exhibition of ceramics and prints, 1938
Poster for Federal Art Project exhibition of ceramics and prints, 1938

Interested in local history? Search by place for Pennsylvania. Clicking on a record will take you directly to the digital collection in which it is included. Additionally, one of the options for searching is by date. Looking for items relevant to just one decade? Limit your search this way and explore a specific time frame of American history.

To further your historical research, check out the UArts Libraries online subscription databases Daily Life Through History and World History: The Modern Era (if you are off campus, you will have to log in first). These databases also have primary resources as well as scholarly essays.

Scenery in Fairmount Park
Scenery in Fairmount Park

Digital Resource of the Week: Atlas Obscura

On the About Us page, the Atlas Obscura team says, “if you’re looking for miniature cities, glass flowers, books bound in human skin, gigantic flaming holes in the ground, bone churches, balancing pagodas, or homes built entirely out of paper, the Atlas Obscura is where you’ll find them.”

Yangshuo and Moon Hill
Yangshuo and Moon Hill

Founded in 2009, Atlas Obscura is a collaborative website documenting unusual and interesting places around the world. You’ll learn about architecture, museums, and natural wonders. Search by continent, country, or even state. There are dozens of curious sites right here in Philadelphia! Also explore by categories such as martian landscapes, strange science, or eccentric homes.

Pierre Cardin's Bubble House
Pierre Cardin's Bubble House

If you like the weird and wonderful, follow their blog.

Dead Pals of Sam Sanfillippo
Dead Pals of Sam Sanfillippo

Digital Resource of the Week: Paleo Art

Paleo Art, from the Smithsonian Institution, highlights beautiful illustrations used to explore and preserve natural specimens from the Paleontological period. This website demonstrates the importance of drawing to the field of paleobiology.

Ceratosaurusgil drawing from 1920
Ceratosaurusgil drawing from 1920

There are three sections to Paleo Art. Historical Art is the collection of illustrations. Working with fossils and other fragile specimens, detailed drawings of the specimens allow scientists and historians to review objects that cannot easily be handled or photographed. Illustrations depict everything from dinosaurs to shrimp. Illustration Care provides an overview of how the Smithsonian preserves and maintains these important documents. Illustration Techniques explains how to become a paleontological illustrator and why illustrations can be more useful to scientists than photographs.

If you are interested in fossils and skeletons, you can search the National Museum of Natural History’s Paleobiology Collections to see more. You can view nearly half a million specimens online! Visit the Smithsonian’s Department of Paleobiology for more information. Also check out the UArts Libraries for some great books on paleontology, fossils, and dinosaurs.

Digital Resource of the Week: An Invitation to Dance

The Ruck Ruck Galop Dance
The Ruck Ruck Galop Dance

An Invitation to Dance: A History of Social Dance in America is an online exhibition by the American Antiquarian Society. The essays and illustrations provide a terrific overview to the history of social dance, which is an important part of American history. In the 18th and 19th centuries, dancing was a very popular social event. Dances were fun for family and friends, but also provided a place to find romance and network – socially and politically.

The exhibition looks not only at the social aspects but also the language of dance and music, the fashion trends and the rules of etiquette of the time. An excellent bibliography will help you find more resources on the subject.

detail from a ticket for a Bal Masque in Worcester, Massachusetts
detail from a ticket for a Bal Masque in Worcester, Massachusetts

Want to see these dances in action? Check out America Dances! 1897-1948: A Collector’s Edition of Social Dance in Film by Dancetime Publications (Greenfield Library DVD, GD 344). We also have a new book on the subject – Ballroom, Boogie, Shimmy Sham, Shake: A Social and Popular Dance Reader by Julie Malnig (available in Greenfield Library and the Music Library). And don’t forget to search Dance in Video for the subject “social dances“.