January 22, 2022

UK: Over Half the Nation's Collection of Paintings Now Online

From the Public Catalogue Foundation:

Your Paintings is the first national online museum of all publicly owned oil paintings in the UK. It was launched in June of this year (2011) by the Public Catalogue Foundation (PCF) and the BBC. Today it has been announced that a further 40,000 paintings have been uploaded to the site since the launch, taking the total to 104,000 paintings, over half the national collection.

Among the latest painting images uploaded to the site are works by Thomas Brooks (RNLI Grace Darling Museum, Northumberland), Edgar Degas (The Barber Institute of Fine Arts, Birmingham), Joshua Reynolds (The University of Aberdeen), Bridget Riley (Morley College, London), Peter Paul Rubens (National Trust, Saltram, Devon) and Henry Whiting’s Man Wrestling an Alligator from Dingles Fairground Heritage Centre, a world-class collection of British fairground art from the 1880s to the 1980s. In total the works of over 23,000 artists can now be seen on the site.

Your Paintings is the world’s most ambitious initiative to bring an entire nation’s painting collection to the public online. The UK’s collection is an estimated 200,000 oil paintings, held in 3,000 galleries, museums, libraries and public institutions, making it one of the largest and most diverse collections in the world.

Your Paintings is interactive and fully searchable by artist, collection and location, and is enriched with links to the BBC’s formidable archive of TV, radio and online resources. It provides links to the collections themselves and encourages users to visit the paintings in person.

To make the site searchable by subject matter over 5,000 members of the public have already signed up as taggers, alongside curators and experts, participating in the enormous task of cataloguing the collection online. These Taggers have already entered over 1.3m tags into the system. Tagging, using the latest crowd-sourcing techniques, is revealing a fascinating new layer of rich, and ultimately shareable, data, that will allow searches for a huge range of subject matter across the website.

Direct to Your Paintings

Learn More About the Project

Details About the Your Paintings “Tagger”

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.