Digital Resource of the Week: International Music Scores Library Project

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The International Music Scores Library Project (IMSLP) aims to catalog all the free, public domain music scores available online in one simple, searchable interface. The Project was started in 2006 by Edward Guo, a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston and currently a doctoral student at Harvard Law School.

IMSLP, commonly called the Petrucci Library after the Italian sheet music printer Ottaviano Petrucci, has over 210,000 scores and 20,000 recordings. The Library is a wiki searchable by composer, nationality,  genre, and more. But the Library is more than a collection of music: the IMSLP Journal and Forums are digital meeting places for musicians and music lovers to share ideas and collaborate on projects.

IMSLP works hard to follow all copyright regulations, as The New York Times reported last year, though this is difficult given that different countries have different rules. Volunteers help check for copyright violations. Considering signing up to become an IMSLP contributor yourself and help keep the project going!

Digital Resources of the Week: The National Trust Library Historic Postcards

Postcards have always been a popular souvenir and a fun way to send a quick message home while on vacation. Often depicting famous buildings or landscapes, The National Trust Library Historic Postcard Collection suggests that “these postcards also provide unique evidence of the evolution in American architecture, with rare glimpses of buildings or places that may no longer exist or have dramatically altered over time.”

The National Trust Historic Postcard Collection has over 20,000 postcards. The University of Maryland’s University Libraries’ Digital Collections provides images of many of these postcards. Browse by state (there are 830 postcards depicting aspects of Pennsylvania) or enter a keyword search such as Philadelphia, ocean, or flower.

 

Biscayne Bay in Miami, Florida, circa 1908
Biscayne Bay in Miami, Florida, circa 1908

Want to see more postcards? Search the UArts Libraries’ catalog for the subject postcards. We have many beautiful books including one about Philadelphia postcards from the early 1900s. Happy travels this summer!

 

Philadelphia's City Hall, circa 1901-1907
Philadelphia's City Hall, circa 1901-1907

Digital Resource of the Week: Rare Book Room

Through the publishing house Octavo, the Rare Book Room currently has over 400 digitized books available to read online. Many of the books are beautiful examples of the histories of print design, typography, and illustration.

You can search by subject such as literature (where you will find Shakespeare’s work), graphic arts (including a work by Bodoni), music (mostly Beethoven and Mozart), or photography (the Pennsylvania Railroad Photographs from the 1870s are here).

Many of the libraries that hold the original materials are right here in Philadelphia! In the drop-down menu for Find by Library, check out The American Antiquarian Society, The American Philosophical Society, the Ewell Sale Stewart Library of the Academy of Natural Sciences, The Historical Society of Pennsylvania, The Library Company of Philadelphia, the Rosenbach Museum & Library, and the University of Pennsylvania Library.

Please note that you will have to allow pop-ups on your web browser to use the site.

Here are some highlights of the collection:

A book of hours - "Horae Beatae Mariae ad usum Romanum" - from 1524
A book of hours - "Horae Beatae Mariae ad usum Romanum" - from 1524
Louis Renard's "Poissons, Ecrevisses et Crabes, de Diverses Couleu" (1719)
Louis Renard's "Poissons, Ecrevisses et Crabes, de Diverses Couleu" (1719)

 

Lewis Carroll's "Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass" illustrated by Blanche McManus, 1900
Lewis Carroll's "Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass" illustrated by Blanche McManus, 1900
German Christian text, unknown author, circa 1475
German Christian text, unknown author, circa 1475

Digital Resource of the Week: Artists’ Books from Reed Library

Reed College Library has a wonderful online exhibition and essay about artists’ books. Pulling items from their Special Collections, the exhibition includes works by artists such as William Kentridge, Gerlovin and Gerlovina, and Xu Bing. The collection contains excellent examples of modern book arts and provides page by page viewing of most items.

 

Tobacco Project by Xu Bing
Tobacco Project by Xu Bing

You can browse the collection by four main sections: livre d’artist (deluxe edition prints), avant garde, conceptualist, or contemporary. Or, chose to explore by artist. When Reed does not have an artist’s work online, they link to external websites about the artist.

The University Libraries also has a book arts collection with over 400 items available for students and faculty to view.

 

Digital Resource of the Week: Getty Research Institute’s Digital Collections

The Getty Research Institute (GRI) works collaboratively with the collections of the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Conservation Institute, and the Getty Foundation.

Sketchbook of Pompeii by Sir William Gell (1830)
Sketchbook of Pompeii by Sir William Gell (1830)

 

The Getty Research Institute‘s mission “is dedicated to furthering knowledge and advancing understanding of the visual arts.” To meet this goal, the Institute has many digital collections, including images of art, architecture, photography, and primary sources such as artists’ letters.

The GRI’s digital collections can be searched a variety of ways. For example, search by medium to discover drawings or photographs. Search by subject to limit to Latin America or Modernism.

The Institute also has a Photo Study Collection of about a million of its photographs available online. The Collection acts as a reference tool for studying antiquities and Western art.

At the end of this month, GRI will launch the Getty Research Portal, “a free online search platform providing global access to digitized art history texts in the public domain.” These digitized art books will provide easy access to critical scholarship. Stay tuned to learn more!

El Lissitzky (1923) "Schaumachinerie" (Show machinery)
El Lissitzky (1923) "Schaumachinerie" (Show machinery)