The recently completed digitization project was a collaboration from the Brooklyn Museum Libraries and Archives and Frick Art Reference Library.
The art exhibitions of small galleries, society clubs, and associations in the late 19th and early 20th centuries chronicle the emergence of New York City as a metropolis destined to be a global center for the international art market. Ephemeral exhibition catalogs, checklists, and pamphlets from this period document artistic movements, artists of the period, economic markets, and social and cultural history. The materials from eleven galleries, clubs, and associations that have played a pivotal role in the history of art and New York City have been digitized from the collections of the Frick Art Reference Library and the Brooklyn Museum Libraries and Archives and are now available to researchers worldwide. Spanning the period from 1875 to 1922, this initial collection serves as the foundation for a more comprehensive project to document the New York City art scene at the turn of the 20th century.The collaborative project to digitize holdings of exhibition catalogs held at the Frick Art Reference Library and the Brooklyn Museum Libraries and Archives has just been completed, and funding for a next phase secured. Entitled Documenting the Gilded Age: New York City Exhibitions at the Turn of the 20th Century, the collection offers 172 catalogs from eleven art galleries, clubs, and associations that were active during the late 19th and early 20th centuries in full-text digital facsimiles to researchers worldwide through Arcade , the catalog of the New York Art Resources Consortium ( NYARC ).[Clip]An accompanying online exhibition curated by library staff members adds historical context to the body of material, featuring images highlighting the Brummer Gallery, Century Association, Colony Club, Cottier Gallery, Grand Central Art Galleries, Lotos Club, Montross Gallery, National Association of Portrait Painters, New York Water Color Club, Salmagundi Club, and Union League Club.The exhibition may be viewed at http://gildedage.omeka.net.Profiles of the featured eleven associations offer brief histories and a sample of images from the catalogs. Selected highlights follow the subsequent provenance of exhibited works. The digital collection and online exhibition illuminate the role these institutions played in cultivating artistic movements, track the emergence of notable European and American artists, and detail the rich cultural history of New York City and the nation.[Clip]Funding for the collection and a second expansion to take place during 2012 is provided by the New York State Regional Bibliographic Databases Program, as part of its support of Digital Metro New York , a collaborative effort to support digitization projects involving significant collections held by METRO member libraries in New York City and Westchester County.