Digital Art Resources Preservation Project Announced

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hopeless_404_sm_0The New York Art Resources Consortium (NYARC), consisting of the libraries and archives of The Frick Collection (Frick Art Reference Library), the Brooklyn Museum, and The Museum of Modern Art, has been awarded a grant of $340,000 from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to initiate a program of web archiving for specialist art historical resources.

The two-year program will follow a 2012 pilot study, Reframing Collections for the Digital Age, also funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. That study demonstrated that the types of materials the NYARC libraries had been collecting in printed form were increasingly migrating to online versions available exclusively on the web.

The 2012 study concluded that there was an urgent need to document the dynamic web-based versions of auction catalogues, catalogues raisonnés, and scholarly research projects, as well as artist, gallery, and museum websites, because otherwise there is a real and imminent danger of a “digital black hole” in the art historical record.

The Frick Collection is the administrator of the grant, with Deborah Kempe ( as Principal Investigator. You can learn more about the project from an interview of NYARC leaders in The Signal, the digital preservation blog of the Library of Congress.

The New York Art Resources Consortium began in 2006 and in 2007, with funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, launched, an integrated catalogue, ARCADE, which contains
approximately 1 million records. The Consortium is currently implementing a Print Reserve in order to consolidate its holdings of hard-copy periodicals.

Illustration provided by NYARC.

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