ArchNet is an online community with a specific focus on the built environment of the Islamic World. Operated by MIT, with the support of The Aga Khan Trust for Culture, the site serves as a forum for scholars, architects, planners, and urban, landscape and interior designers to share resources, including digital images of relevant sites. The images, of which there are more than 37,000, are of good quality, and users can browse for them using relevant fields, or by keyword searching the digital library.
Arounder offers a number of 360-degree photographic panoramas of notable cultural sites throughout Europe, including Sainte-Chapelle in Paris, the Cologne Cathedral, and Piazza San Pietro in Vatican City (some American sites are available, but they are by no means notable). The available sites are not a comprehensive representation of the cultural heritage of Europe, with even some major cities like London totally unrepresented; and the site seems intended to promote tourism more than anything else; but it offers what may be the best understanding of an architectural monument short of being at it.
Catena, sponsored by the BGC and with the support of the National Endowment for the Humanities, is an image database focused on the history of gardens and landscapes, from ancient Roman archaeological sites to 19th century Hudson Valley estates. Images are of good quality and are accessible as an independent collection within MDID, or through the Luna Commons.
The Domestic Interiors Database tracks the evolution of the domestic interior (through secondary representations) from the Renaissance until today. It includes interpretative data as well as standard reference information, and both simple keywords and advanced parameters can be used to search records. The database includes both visual and textual sources, in the first case prints, paintings, photographs, film stills, etc and in the second novels, correspondences, advertisements, periodicals, etc. The depth of information and the breadth of sources make this a particularly valuable resource for scholars of domestic spaces.
Great Buildings Collection is an excellent online resource for information about and images of architecture. The site features 1200 architectural historically significant buildings from all points of human history and on (nearly) all continents. Great Buildings presents key information about each building alongside photographic images, architectural drawings, maps, timelines, and 3D building models. Users can access buildings by browsing maps and timelines, by creators and locations, or by searching essential fields. Images vary in quality, and some are externally linked, but on the whole are good.
Back to top
- About the Library
- Visual Media Resources
- Research Programs
- Seminar Series 2014-15
- Digital Initiatives
- BGC In-House
- Fellowship Programs
- Cultures of Conservation