From The Art Newspaper:
The Vatican has published a vast online catalogue of the Italian Catholic Church’s artistic heritage. The project, which began 16 years ago, is ongoing but in the meantime the Church hopes the database will help in the recovery of works if they are stolen.
The website contains almost 3.5m objects, from paintings and sculptures to ornaments, crucifixes, altarpieces and other items belonging to some of Italy’s 63,773 churches in 216 dioceses. The database will be subject regularly updated. Thousands of works held in the churches of certain dioceses, such as those of Florence and Naples, are still to be catalogued.
The database will eventually be expanded to include the Church’s architectural heritage and literary archives.
Users can search by artist, subject matter, object, diocese and date range and the search results can be filtered further if needed, but experts have pointed out a number of flaws in the system that suggest more work is needed.
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