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: 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)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Digital Resource of the Week: the Mucha Foundation

 

Poster for ’Gismonda’ (1894)
Poster for ’Gismonda’ (1894)

Alphonse Maria Mucha was a Czech painter in the late 1800s. He is best known for his French Art Nouveau style illustrations for theatrical posters. The Mucha Foundation was established in 1992 and is devoted to teaching and sharing his art.

The Foundation’s website is an excellent source of reading and imagery about Mucha. The Timeline section places Mucha in political and cultural contexts. The Gallery has over 300 works available for online viewing. Browse all the works or by themes. For fun, there are Color Your Own Mucha downloadable pdfs.

There is also an excellent bibliography on Mucha to help you further your research. Learn more about him at the UArts Libraries. Search for his name as a subject and as an author.  Read a biography on Oxford Art Online (you’ll be prompted to log in if you are off campus) and view images in ARTstor (you’ll be prompted to log in if you are off campus).

Digital Resource of the Week: The Morgan Library and Museum

The Morgan Library and Museum is a terrific collection of art, music, and literature. Located in New York City, their website offers online exhibitions, music manuscripts, videos, and more.

Manāfi˓-i al-ḥayavā (The Benefits of Animals), in Persian. Persia, Maragha, between 1297 and 1300, for Shams al-Dīn Ibn Żiyā˒ al-Dīn al-Zūshkī
Manāfi˓-i al-ḥayavā (The Benefits of Animals), in Persian. Persia, Maragha, between 1297 and 1300, for Shams al-Dīn Ibn Żiyā˒ al-Dīn al-Zūshkī

Exhibitions of the library and museum holdings are diverse – from In the Company of Animals to Jim Dine: The Glyptotek Paintings to Auld Lang Syne: The Story of a Song. Many of the exhibitions have an online version with an essay and additional resources. You can also browse through highlights of the collection including Medieval and Renaissance manuscripts, music manuscripts, and paintings and sculpture.

There are videos available on topics such as the famous Dutch manuscript, The Hours of Catherine of Cleves and Princeton professor Cornel West discussing Jane Austen.

Jean de Brunhoff's Histoire de Babar Maquette
Jean de Brunhoff's Histoire de Babar Maquette

The Morgan Library and Museum has an active blog highlighting different items in the collection. New at the Morgan showcases new acquisitions by the Library and Museum. Secrets from the Vault, another theme of the blog, includes posts about interesting items like John Ruskin’s Puppet Show and Death or Castration? The Pains of Circus Management.

If you like the collection, check out Pierpont Morgan Library (Pierpont Morgan was an avid collector in the late 1800s) as an author in the UArts Libraries catalog.