Many people don’t realise that the UK has tens of thousands of paintings in its publicly funded museums and institutions that are not currently viewable by the public, either because they are in storage or are kept in buildings that are inaccessible to the general public. The vast majority of these paintings have never been published online.
Now, in partnership with the Public Catalogue Foundation (a charity established to document this national resource) and hundreds of galleries and collections across the country, BBC Online’s Your Paintings site will begin making these artworks available to view by anyone, anytime, for free.
You can see the site at: www.bbc.co.uk/yourpaintings.
Our initial beta release today already allows you to access over 60,000 paintings from over 800 collections, covering more than 15,000 individual artists. But this is just the start. We’ll be adding thousands more paintings every month, with the aim of having the complete national collection (estimated at around 200,000 works) available within 18 months.
The BBC is inviting the public to tag the online paintings.
We want to unlock this learning potential by working with the public to map the contents of these paintings – through the launch of Your Paintings Tagger. Your Paintings Tagger is a crowd sourced tagging application, built in collaboration with Arfon Smith and the team at Oxford University’s Astrophysics Lab, who were behind the hugely successful Galaxy Zoo website. You can access Tagger and start getting involved here.
Direct to Your Paintings
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