Visual Media Resources


The Bard Graduate Center’s Visual Media Resources Department (VMR) maintains the teaching collection of digital images and slides, while also actively building, in collaboration with Bard College’s Visual Resources department, a collection of digital images that are made available to faculty and students via Artstor’s Shared Shelf. It also provides equipment, training, and support for students and faculty wishing to produce digital images for presentations, papers, and projects. In addition, the VMR oversees the BGC Study Collection located in the Object Lab (310) and the Digital Media Lab (DML).

Hours, Location, and Staff

Visual Media Resources is located on the third floor of 38 West 86th Street. Its public facilities are accessible any time the building is open, generally Monday through Thursday 8:15 am to 10:45 pm and Friday through Sunday 8:15 am to 9:45 pm. Staff is available to answer questions and offer training Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 9:00 am to 6:30 pm, and from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm on Wednesdays and Fridays.

Barb Elam is the Associate Director of Visual Media Resources and Study Collection Librarian, and can be contacted by phone at 212.501.3085 or by email at barb.elam@bgc.bard.edu.

Mike Satalof is the Archivist and Digital Collections Librarian, and can be contacted by phone at 212.501.3084 or by email at mike.satalof@bgc.bard.edu.


About the BGC Image Collections

The Image Collections

The BGC’s Visual Media Resources collection, which is in a state of constant and continual growth, represents a broad survey of the decorative arts and material culture, with deeper coverage in certain periods, materials or regions, as dictated by faculty interests. This collection of approximately 22,000 images is fully integrated into the Artstor digital library through our subscription to Artstor’s Shared Shelf. In addition to the BGC’s institutional collections, with its particular focus on the decorative arts and material culture, Bard College’s art historically oriented collection, with nearly 38,000 images, is also available to students and faculty within Shared Shelf. Other Shared Shelf-accessible image collections—numbering over 12,000 images—include the BGC Exhibition, BGC Institutional Photographs, and Paul Hollister (studio glass) collections.

The BGC’s 35mm slide archive, housed outside the VMR’s public space and in the Library’s lower level, numbers 50,000 images. It reflects the teaching interests of the BGC’s faculty from its earliest days and is a near-comprehensive overview of the decorative arts, spanning time, geography and medium. The collection has been digitized on an add-need basis over time, and though it is currently inactive, faculty may request digitization of slides to facilitate their teaching.

The BGC’s Paul Hollister Slide Collection contains approximately 17,000 slides compiled by late glass scholar, glass collector, and painter Paul Hollister (1918-2004) for teaching the history of glass. Many of the images were taken by Hollister himself and contain such imagery as glass studios, glassmaking techniques, and exhibitions of studio and art glass throughout the United States and Europe. Hollister was one of the leading authorities on glass paperweights and taught at Bard Graduate Center in its early history. This collection was donated to the VMR by Mr. Hollister’s widow, Irene Hollister (1920-2016). A selection of slides showing workshops and glassmaking techniques from studio glass artists from the 1980s and 90s have been digitized and are available through Artstor’s Shared Shelf. Access to the physical collection is available by contacting a VMR staff member.

Equipment and Software
Equipment and Software

Visual Media Resources provides, and in some cases lends out, various equipment to support the digitization and production of digital media. If you require training with any of the equipment or software listed below, please see a VMR staff member to schedule an appointment. If you experience problems with any VMR workstation, contact a VMR staff member or email techsupport@bgc.bard.edu.

The following computing equipment is available:

  • 2 24” Apple iMacs running OSX
  • 1 Dell Studio XPS, with 24” screen, running Windows Vista
  • 1 Epson 10000 XL Large Format Scanner
  • 2 Epson Epson V700 Pro Letter Sized Scanners
  • 1 Nikon Super Coolscan 5000 35mm Slide Film Scanner
The above computers have some or all of the following software:
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Adobe InDesign
  • Adobe Bridge
  • Adobe Dreamweaver
  • Adobe Fireworks
  • Adobe Acrobat X Pro
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Olympus DSS Player and Transcription Kit
  • Artstor Offline Image Viewer (OIV)


The VMR also has a Viewing Station with the following:
  • 19” Toshiba LCD Monitor
  • Philips Region Free DVD Player
  • Toshiba VCR
  • Canon Microfilm and –fiche Reader and Scanner


The VMR makes available the following specialized equipment for use off-site (to check any of these out please contact a VMR staff member):


1 Olympus Digital Voice Recorder

This recorder captures audio in WMA format. The PC has Olympus’ DSS Player software and an audio transcription kit with a foot pedal to help facilitate speech transcription.


1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS8 Digital Camera

This camera has a 14-megapixel sensor and a 16x optical zoom wide angle Leica lens, and it captures hi-definition video. The VMR supplies an SD card but students can make use of their own if they require additional storage.


2 Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS3 Digital Cameras

These cameras have a 10-megapixel sensor and a 12x optical zoom wide angle Leica lens, and capture hi-definition video. The VMR supplies SD cards but students can make use of their own if they require additional storage.

Training, Support, and Tutorials
Training, Support, and Tutorials

The VMR offers training and guidance in the use of equipment and software involved in the creation of digital media. The staff is available during office hours to answer questions and offer advice, but if you require in-depth training, contact a staff member in advance to schedule an appointment.

The VMR also offers a number of workshops throughout the academic year on imaging-related subjects of broad interest to students, faculty, and staff.

Please note that VMR employees do not function as the BGC’s technology support staff; if you have questions or problems that fall outside the purview of the VMR or its equipment, please contact BGC Tech Support.


Lynda.com

The VMR provides access to the on-demand video learning site Lynda.com. With a library of more than 4,000 courses, Lynda provides instruction in the software, creative and technical skills. Lynda is a high-quality resource for faculty, students, and staff looking to develop skills in areas including Adobe Creative Suite, Microsoft Office, coding and web design, education and e-learning, photography, and more. Using the Bard Graduate Center’s account, you can access videos from your home computer or mobile device.

To use the Lynda account, please contact Mike Satalof (mike.satalof@bgc.bard.edu) or Barb Elam (barb.elam@bgc.bard.edu). You will be given a username and password for a limited time (usually one to two weeks). If the account is in use, you will be added to the queue for its next availability.

Image Resources

Artstor

The Artstor digital library is Bard Graduate Center’s primary resource for finding digital images and is accessible to students and faculty. Artstor is a subscription-based online image library with more than 2 million images of the visual arts, humanities, and social sciences, contributed by museums, archives, artists, and scholars. Users can browse in a number of different fields or search by keyword or with advanced filters. Image quality is generally excellent, with high-resolution JPEGs available for virtually all images. Note that searching for “IAP” alongside keywords will return images that have been designated by their contributor (primarily the Met) as freely publishable for academic purposes.


Shared Shelf Collections

Bard Graduate Center’s Visual Media Resources (VMR) collection, which is in a state of constant and continual growth, represents a broad survey of the decorative arts and material culture, with deeper coverage in certain periods, materials, or regions, as dictated by faculty interests. This collection of approximately 22,000 images is fully integrated into the Artstor digital library through our subscription to Artstor’s Shared Shelf. In addition to BGC’s institutional collections, with its particular focus on the decorative arts and material culture, Bard College’s art-historically oriented collection, with nearly 38,000 images, is also available to students and faculty within Shared Shelf. Other Shared Shelf-accessible image collections—numbering more than 12,000 images—include the BGC Exhibition, BGC Institutional Photographs, and Paul Hollister (studio glass) collections. These resources are available for use on and off campus. Images may be used for educational purposes only as outlined in the copyright law of the United States. For an orientation in accessing Artstor, contact Barb Elam for an appointment.

Also available below are links to external image and imaging resources, assembled and synopsized by the VMR. These links are available in one comprehensive, alphabetized list, or grouped by content and again listed alphabetically. If you have questions or if you’d like to offer suggestions or corrections regarding external resources, contact Barb Elam.


All Image Resources

Artstor

Artstor is an online image library with more than 1 million images of the visual arts, humanities, and social sciences, contributed by museums, archives, artists, and scholars. Users can browse in a number of different fields or search by keyword or by using advanced filters. Image quality is generally excellent with high-resolution JPEGs available for virtually all images. Note that searching for “IAP” alongside keywords will return images that have been designated by their contributor (primarily the Met) as freely publishable for academic purposes.


American Memory

American Memory is an aggregation of more than 9 million transcriptions, audio files, and still and moving images from the Library of Congress and other institutions, all documenting the American experience. The material is grouped into more than 100 collections browsable by topic (e.g., maps, religion), LC subject headings (e.g., Posters, Haymarket Affair), or by title (e.g., “African American Odyssey” or “The American Variety Stage: Vaudeville and Popular Entertainment, 1870–1920”). The metadata is excellent throughout and images range from good to excellent, with some even offered as high resolution TIFFs.


ArchNet

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.


British Library

The British Library makes available 30,000 digital images representing key objects from its holdings. Users can search using keywords (unfortunately, there is no advanced search functionality) or browse online exhibition groups, such as “Victorian Popular Music” and “Philatelic Rarities.” Images are very good throughout, and many bound works, such as Handel’s Messiah, are viewable in the library’s “Turning the Pages” software (requires Microsoft’s SilverLight browser plugin) as browsable, page-flip-able virtual objects.


British Museum

Of the British Museum’s more than 7 million objects, 2 million have been catalogued, and of those nearly 500,000 objects have at least one digital image available online. The museum’s collection covers the history of human activity, with objects representing ancient Europe, ancient Greece and Rome, and virtually all non-Western cultures from their pre-history to present. The museum makes all of its digital images freely available for educational use, including limited-run academic publishing, and although the readily available digital images are quite good, it also has a registration-based system wherein users can request that ultra-high quality renditions be sent to them by e-mail.


Calisphere

Calisphere is an online image resource made available by the University of California system. It offers more than 200,000 digital representations of primary materials documenting the history of the state of California, from its origins through the 1970s. Materials are browsable by subject or by thematic collections and are searchable by keyword. Images are available in high-resolution zoomable form, but are only downloadable as average quality JPEGs.


Catena, The Digital Archive of Historic Gardens and Landscapes

Sponsored by Bard Graduate Center with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Catena Digital Archive of Historic Gardens and Landscapes is an interactive 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


Cleveland Museum of Art

The Cleveland Museum of Art makes available more than 23,000 digital images representing objects from its collection. The museum’s holdings span the range of visual and material culture and include works from virtually all cultures and periods of human production. Images are searchable by keyword or using advanced parameters, and available images are of good quality. Requesting the rights to reproduce images is a fairly straightforward process, with an online form linked from each catalogue entry.


Database Machine Drawings

Database Machine Drawings (DMD) was developed by the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science and makes available more than 1,600 high-quality digital images of Medieval and Renaissance (1235–1650) mechanical drawings. Users can make use of either simple or advanced search parameters for finding images, and the metadata is extremely thorough from image to image.


David Rumsey Map Collections

The David Rumsey Map Collection offers users access to more than 21,000 ultra high quality digital images of rare maps and other cartographic material, focused on the 18thand 19th centuries and spanning world geography. The images are made available through a number of different platforms, including Luna Commons (best for downloading), Google Map overlays, and 2- and 3-D GIS viewers. The website also includes other useful features under the “Blog” category, particularly the blog itself, related websites, and videos on the subject of mapping.


Digital Library for the Decorative Arts and Material Culture, University of Wisconsin-Madison

The University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Digital Library for the Decorative Arts and Material Culture is an excellent decorative-arts-centric, early-American-leaning online resource. The library makes available a number of classic texts (such as Owen Jones’s Grammar of Ornament and Edith Wharton’s The Decoration of Houses) as ultra high-quality JPEGs and also offer a small, focused digital image database representing two of the special collections. Even further, the library includes a list of online resources that extends the range of the BGC list, although there is some duplication.


Domestic Interiors Database

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, and film stills, etc., and in the second case novels, correspondences, advertisements, and periodicals, etc. The depth of information and the breadth of sources make this a particularly valuable resource for scholars of domestic spaces.


Duke Digital Collections

This page brings together all of the digital media collections made available by Duke University. A few individual collections are Duke-only but otherwise are open to all. The subject matter ranges widely across the visual and literary arts, history, popular culture, and more. Of particular interest are several collections focused on the history of advertising, African-American women, and a collection of Vica comics, which were produced by the Nazi–controlled government in German–occupied France as a propaganda tool against the Allied forces. Collections can be keyword-searched individually or all together, and images are of excellent quality across the different collections.


Epact: Scientific Instruments of Medieval and Renaissance Europe

Epact is an electronic catalog of medieval and Renaissance scientific instruments from four European museums: the Museum of the History of Science, Oxford; the Istituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza, Florence; the British Museum, London; and the Museum Boerhaave, Leiden. It consists of a browsable and searchable digital catalog with 520 objects ranging from astrolabes to nocturnals to surveying instruments. And while the catalog entries are of principal interest, the site includes valuable accessory information, such as a glossary and maker biographies. Images are of consistently good quality.


Flickr

Flickr is an image-hosting and -sharing website which claims to host more than 4 billion digital images uploaded by its users. Although many of the images will have nothing to do with the decorative arts and material culture, there is a wealth of vacation photographs, book scans, etc., that may be of value. Since the images are generated entirely by users, the image quality varies widely (although they are often available as large JPEGs), as will the quality, extent and accuracy of metadata. Note that all images have rights notices displayed, and some users have released their work for free use (including commercial use) under a Creative Commons license.


Flickr Commons

Flickr Commons offers cultural heritage institutions a centralized, easy-to-use site to host selections from their digitized collections, and in so doing facilitate much wider public access to these collections than might otherwise be possible. At present nearly forty institutions, American and international, contribute digital images to the Commons, with the Smithsonian, Brooklyn Museum, Getty, and Library of Congress being just a few of them. Metadata and image quality vary by institution and only limited search options are available, but users can browse by tag or by contributing institutions (which often create thematic image groups).


Google Patents

Google, in cooperation with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, makes available for full-text searching approximately 7 million patents and 1 million patent applications. Patents are available to view in their original form, which can also be downloaded in PDF format, and many patents include accompanying documentary drawings. Users can search for patents using keywords or advanced options.


Great Buildings Collection

Great Buildings Collection is an excellent online resource for information about and images of architecture. The site features 1,200 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 3-D 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 they are good


Harvard University Digital Collections

Harvard University makes a number of its special collections available in digitized form, which range widely by object type and subject matter. Highlights include “Studies in Scarlet: Marriage & Sexuality in the U.S. and U.K., 1815–1914” and “Contagion: Historical Views of Diseases and Epidemics.” Collections are only searchable and browsable individually, and the interface, metadata, and image quality vary from collection to collection, but they range generally from good to excellent.


Images from the History of Medicine

Images from the History of Medicine provides access to nearly 70,000 images in the collections of the History of Medicine Division of the U.S. National Library of Medicine. The collection includes portraits, photographs, caricatures, genre scenes, posters, and graphic arts illustrating the social and historical aspects of medicine from the 15th to the 21st century. The collection uses the Luna interface to browse, search, and download images, which are of excellent quality and have excellent metadata.

The J. Paul Getty Museum

The J. Paul Getty Museum makes available digital images of a large number of the works in its collection, which ranges from painting to furniture to architectural elements and includes some particularly fine examples of decorative arts objects. The image database is searchable by keyword or browsable by artist, work type, or subject, and the images available are of good quality.


JISC Digital Media

JISC Digital Media is a U.K.–based site dedicated to supplying the further and higher education communities with the knowledge needed to create and distribute high-quality digital media (still and moving images, sound, and multimedia). Although the site is oriented to a U.K.–based and professional audience, the information it provides is nonetheless invaluable, covering the range of production practices that one would need to understand to create a personal archive of high-quality digital media.


Library of Congress, Online Catalog of the Prints and Photographs Division

The Prints and Photographs Division of the Library of Congress holds a massive collection of printed and photographed materials, 75% of which is cataloged and a substantial portion of that for which digital images are available. Objects span the fullest range of subject matter and so the collection has a wide potential relevance. Users can browse specific collections (e.g. National Child Labor Committee Collection, British Cartoons), or find images using the limited search options. Metadata is excellent throughout and the catalog interoperates with the Library’s Thesaurus of Geographic Material (TGM, see thesauri). Images are another high point: all that can be made available are (some have copyright restrictions or have not yet been scanned), and are available as excellent quality JPEGs and uncompressed archival TIFFs.


Life Magazine Photo Archive

Google hosts millions of prints and photographs from Life Magazine’s photography archive. Works date as far back as the 1750s and many were never published. Images can be browsed by decade and by some suggested subjects, but otherwise keyword searching is the only available search tool. Even with limited search options this remains an immensely valuable image resource, particularly for scholars of American social history and/or material culture. It should also be noted that images are of extremely high quality.


Luna Commons

Luna Commons hosts a number of freely available collections (permissions-based collections require a subscription, which BGC does not have) from participating institutions. These include the Catena Collection, the Farber Gravestone Collection, and Cornell’s Political Americana Collection. The searching and viewing interface is elegant and the metadata and image quality is excellent across all collections.


Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is the preeminent art museum in the United States and holds more than 2 million works of art representing all periods, cultures, and manners of human creative production. The museum’s online database features more than 130,000 digital images of these works. Metadata is thorough throughout, and users can find images by browsing curatorial departments, or by using keyword or advanced searches. While image quality is good for all objects, many (though not all) are available as higher resolution JPEGs through Artstor, and many of these are made available to publish for academic purposes for free.


Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History

The Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History, part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s website, is an extraordinarily comprehensive informational resource for students of the history of visual and material culture. The site offers essential information about the full temporal, geographical and material span of human productivity, all illustrated with works from the Met’s collection. Users can access information by browsing maps and timelines, by accessing thematic essays such as “Wisteria Dining Rooms, Paris” or by using keyword searches.


Morgan Library and Museum Collection

Morgan Library and Museum Catalog

The Morgan Library and Museum makes available digital images of many of the manuscripts and objects in its holdings. Users can access these images either by using Corsair, which takes the format of a standard library catalog, or by using the collections page of the Morgan’s website. The collections page is user-friendly but offers less information, and the catalog features extensive metadata but in an awkward format.


Museum of Modern Art

The Museum of Modern Art has more than 30,000 images of works from its collection available for browsing and searching online. Of particular interest are the more than 6,000 works in the Department of Architecture and Design, which range from the mid-19th century to the present and represent a wide variety of object types. Images are of average quality, but the browse and search tools are both intuitive and extremely refined. Note that some of MoMA’s collection has been made available as high-resolution JPEGs via Artstor.


New York Public Library Digital Gallery

NYPL Digital Gallery provides free and open access to more than 700,000 images digitized from the New York Public Library’s vast collections and include illuminated manuscripts, historical maps, posters, prints, photographs, and more. The subject matter extends far beyond New York City, giving this resource wide potential relevance. Users can search for materials using basic and advanced options or by browsing by subject. The library has also grouped images to form collections, such as “Ornament and Pattern: Pre-Victorian Art Deco,” and “Vintage Holiday Postcards.” Images are of very good quality; non-commercial uses are encouraged; and it’s easy to acquire rights and high-quality TIFFs for publishing.


Oxford Art Online

Oxford Art Online is both an excellent informational resource for the study of the visual arts and an image search engine. At the main page you can choose between an informational search and one that only returns images, with these images being of good quality. While Oxford itself hosts only 6000 or so images, available articles often include links to external image resources such as museum websites.


Oxford University Digital Collections

Oxford University offers a number of its special collections, particularly those from the Bodleian Library, in digital form. Collections are disparate in subject, from Athenian pottery to 18th- and 19thcentury board games, and at present are presented in isolation, with no cross-collection browse or search options available. Images vary in quality by collection: some are large and high resolution, whereas others are small and pixelated.


Smithsonian Archives Image Gallery

The Smithsonian Archives Image Gallery offers a single interface for the browsing and searching of the vast holdings of the Smithsonian’s many sub-institutions, including the National Museum of the American Indian, the Cooper-Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, and National Anthropological Archives. Users can browse by sub-institution, subjects, or object types, or access images using keyword searching. A variety of media types are available, including very good quality still and moving images, sound files, transcriptions, etc., and users can limit searches by media type.


Victoria and Albert Museum

The Victoria and Albert Museum, a UK based institution dedicated to the decorative arts and material culture, makes a substantial portion of its collection available in digital format through its online image database. The database has more than 1 million entries, with metadata and image quality varying from record to record. The search functionality allows users to restrict results to only the highest quality records, and other search and browse features are both extensive and intuitive. The V&A also makes acquiring image rights and high-quality digital files extremely easy (and when possible free) by incorporating “shopping cart” style ordering into the site.


Visual Arts Data Service

The Visual Arts Data Service (VADS) makes available more than 100,000 images across 45 different collections submitted by participating U.K. institutions. Collections of particular interest include Designing Britain from the Design Archives at the University of Brighton and the John Johnson Collection of Trades and Professions. Collections can be searched by keyword or by using the advanced search options, within individual fields, and both metadata and images are of good quality from collection to collection.


Web Gallery of Art

The Web Gallery of Art is an online database of more than 24,000 digital images of European painting and sculpture from the Romanesque period through Romanticism. Its coverage of both major and minor artists is extensive, and significant works often have multiple details available. The site also includes guided tours for periods and places, biographies for many creators, and a glossary with definitions of subjects, materials, and more. Metadata and image quality are both good, search options are extensive, and browsing is intuitive. This is an excellent resource for images of painting or sculpture to supplement a paper or presentation.


Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons hosts more than 6 million media files contributed to the site by users. Images range across all subjects, time periods and geographic regions, and because users contribute them, will necessarily vary in their quality and the extent of their metadata. Virtually all images made available through Wikimedia Commons (though not necessarily Wikipedia) may be freely re-used without the granting of individual permissions, though copyright information is supplied by contributors and should be verified if you choose to publish or publicly display any provided media.


Wikimedia Free Image Resources

Wikimedia’s Free Image Resources page features links to sites exclusively or primarily hosting freely usable digital images. These links are categorized by subject and briefly described. While similar in form and concept to Wikimedia’s Public Domain Image Resources page the links themselves are generally unique.


Wikimedia Public Domain Image Resources

Wikimedia’s Public Domain Image Resources page features links to sites exclusively or primarily hosting public domain digital images. These links are categorized by subject and briefly described. While similar in form and concept to Wikimedia’s Free Image Resources page the links themselves are generally unique.


World Digital Library

The World Digital Library offers historically significant primary documents (including books, manuscripts, and still and motion pictures) from all inhabited regions of the world in high-quality digital format. One can browse by region, time period, object type and more, or search by keyword. Individual images can be saved as high quality TIFFs; multi-page works can be saved page-by-page as TIFFs, or as whole documents in PDF format; and video and audio recordings are available for download as MPEGs or MP3s, respectively.


WorldImages

WorldImages, the product of the California State University system’s IMAGE project, contains nearly 75,000 images representing the arts, sciences, history, material culture, and natural and built environments of virtually all human cultures. Images are grouped into more than 800 portfolios (such as Food & Kitchens), which are further organized into subject groupings (Material Culture & Daily Life), allowing users to browse related groups of images


Yale University Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library offers more than 250,000 digitized images of photographs, textual documents, illuminated manuscripts, maps, works of art, and books in the Beinecke’s collections. Images are browsable by subject specific collections, such Book of Secrets: Alchemy and the European Imagination, 1500–2000 and Russian Graphic Art and the Revolution of 1905, or searchable using keywords or extensive advanced search options. The metadata and image quality are excellent throughout all collections.

Copyright Information

The majority of the use of copyrighted material that takes place at Bard Graduate Center falls within the category of fair use—meaning that it requires neither permission from nor payment to the rights holder—because it is functioning in a closed, strictly educational, non-commercial forum. This is true of papers, unpublished theses, and presentations in classrooms. Any individuals interested in scholarly activities that extend beyond these confines and require the inclusion of potentially copyrighted material (i.e., images) should familiarize themselves with the complexities of United States Copyright Law. The VMR has assembled the following list of external resources to aid members of the BGC community in educating themselves on the subject.


General Copyright Resources:

U.S. Copyright Office Fair Use Index: the U.S. Copyright Office’s site for fair use information.

Stanford Copyright and Fair Use Site: a comprehensive site for information and resources on fair use, made available by Stanford University.

Columbia University Copyright Advisory Office Site: another comprehensive site, made available by Columbia University.

Copyright Crash Course: a tutorial in copyright in academic works, originally designed for faculty, made available by the University of Texas at Austin.

Copyright Term and the Public Domain in the United States: a thorough table for determining whether a work is under copyright or in the public domain, made available by Cornell University.

Checklist for Conducting a Fair Use Analysis: a checklist made available by Cornell University.

A Graduate Student’s Guide to Copyright: (highly recommended), made available by the University of Michigan.


Image Copyright Resources:

Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts: a comprehensive project released in 2015, made available by the College Art Association (CAA).

Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) and Copyright: resources providing guidance on the academic use of images, made available by the Visual Resources Association (VRA).

Digital Image Rights Computator: a tutorial to help the assess the intellectual property status of images documenting works of art, objects, or the built environment, made available by the Visual Resources Association (VRA).

Guide for Finding Visual Resources: information on researching and finding images and assessing their copyright, made available by Cornell University.

Image Request Form/Digitization Services

Images for Faculty

Visual Media Resources (VMR) is actively interested in expanding its digital image collection to fully cover the range of materials taught at Bard Graduate Center and encourages all faculty to make use of its digitization services. To place an image order, faculty should bring their material (such as books, slides, photographs, prints, etc. that can be scanned) to a VMR staff member. Book pages should be clearly marked, and all materials should be accompanied by an Image Order Form listing the date of the request, the date needed, the total number of images in the request, and the book title, page, plate, or figure numbers if applicable.


Student Image Requests (New!)

As of Fall 2015, the VMR extended the image services to students. The VMR will scan, catalog, and publish into Artstor’s Shared Shelf a maximum of 25 images per paper or presentation—with a minimum of five images per order. Scans can be made from publications, ephemera, or 35mm slides. The turnaround time will be one to two weeks but can be as little as two or three days, depending on the size of the order. Any requests outside of this scope (copy stand requests from rare books, for example), will be handled on a case-by-case basis. All 35mm slides must be clearly labelled for cataloguing or include cataloguing information. All images will be catalogued by the VMR. “Scanning only” requests are not permitted. Please fill out a Student Image Order Form with the page #s, fig. #s, etc. of the images you need scanned and bring your materials directly to the VMR. Books can be from the library or your personal collections. Digitization requests are for Bard Graduate Center assignments only and not for outside or personal projects.