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The enduring significance of Harriet Powers’ quilts
July 7, 2017 by artstor
Harriet Powers. Pictorial quilt. 1895-98. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
When the second wave feminist movement in the 1970s brought domestic art into the discussion of art history, textiles became a central topic. This led to the rediscovery of Harriet Powers, whose two surviving quilts currently hang in the Smithsonian and in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.
Powers, born a slave in Georgia in 1837, created the quilts after she was emancipated. She made use of appliqué techniques and storytelling often found in the textiles of Western Africa. While these textiles had typically been created by men, once the tradition was picked up in the United States women became the primary creators.
Powers became significant in academic circles more than half a century after her death as an exemplar of the influence and power of women’s domestic art and art inspired by traditions outside the Western canon, showing not only this type of art’s historical purpose and importance but its aesthetic influence and significance.
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Posted in American Art, Decorative Arts, Utilitarian Objects & Interior Des, Humanities & Social Sciences | Tagged Harriet Powers, quilt | Leave a Comment »
Persuasive cartography: an interview with map collector PJ Mode
June 29, 2017 by artstor
Serio-Comic War Map For The Year 1877. Fred W. Rose. 1877. Persuasive Maps: PJ Mode Collection
Persuasive Cartography: The PJ Mode Collection is a physical and digital collection of maps donated to Cornell University Library’s Rare and Manuscript Collections. It brings together maps from many eras from all over the world to explore their power as visual messengers. The collection is freely accessible in Shared Shelf Commons and through its own website, which leverages the Shared Shelf Commons API to present these beautiful images in a customized end-user environment.
PJ Mode, the collection’s donor, worked closely with Cornell Library staff and the Digital Consulting and Production Services team to take high-resolution photographs of each map and create rich descriptive metadata for each image in Shared Shelf. 
Shared Shelf’s Hannah Marshall sat down recently with Mode to discuss the origin of the physical collection, the implementation of the digital collection, and some of the collection’s highlights.
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Posted in Prints, Shared Shelf, Shared Shelf Commons | Leave a Comment »
Around the web: cannabis curator, superblue crayon, and pink Guggenheim
June 27, 2017 by artstor
Victor Hugo, Vianden Seen through a Spider Web, 1871. Image and original data provided by Réunion des Musées Nationaux / Art Resource, N.Y.; artres.com
Some stories we’ve been reading this month:
UNUSUAL
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Posted in Friday links | Leave a Comment »
The many questions surrounding Jan Van Eyck’s Arnolfini Portrait
June 6, 2017 by artstor
Jan van Eyck. Portrait of Giovanni(?) Arnolfini and his Wife. 1434. The National Gallery, London
June is the most popular month to marry, an excellent reason to take a look at one of the world’s most famous wedding paintings–although we ended up wondering if that, indeed, was what we were seeing.
At first glance, Jan Van Eyck’s Arnolfini Portrait (1434) appears to be an exquisitely rendered but otherwise straightforward depiction of a wealthy merchant and his wife. But take a second look (or third or fourth), and a more intriguing image emerges. The room in which the Arnolfinis pose is laden with images that signal wealth, have religious implications, or are just plain… odd. Continue Reading »
Posted in Paintings, Renaissance, Baroque Art & Architecture in Europe | 4 Comments »
Being there: Robert Capa’s photographs of Omaha Beach on D-Day
June 2, 2017 by artstor
Robert Capa. Normandy; Operation Overlord; German soldiers captured by American forces. 1944. ©ROBERT CAPA © 2001 By Cornell Capa / Magnum Photos
The more than 350,000 photographs in the Artstor Digital Library are not only there for the study of art—they also tell stories of our past. One of the best examples is that of Robert Capa’s breathtaking photographs of Omaha Beach on D-day in German-occupied France on June 6, 1944.
That day Western Allied forces landed on the beaches of Normandy in France and began the effort to liberate Europe from Nazi Germany. The invasion was originally planned for May 1stbut was delayed due to bad weather. Finally, on June 6th, 156,000 Allied troops stormed the beaches – losing between 2,400 and 4,000 lives – and Robert Capa was there to capture it on camera.
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Posted in Humanities & Social Sciences, Photographs | Leave a Comment »
Now available: 10,000 additional photographs and cartoons from Condé Nast
May 24, 2017 by artstor
Louise Dahl-Wolfe. Two Models Seated. 1959. Vogue. © 2012 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Image and original data provided by Condé Nast.
Andre Marty. Illustration of Woman in Green Dress. 1926. Vogue Cover. © 2014 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris. Image and original data provided by Condé Nast.
Condé Nast is providing nearly 10,000 additional images to the Artstor Digital Library, bringing their total contribution to approximately 33,000. The release encompasses images from the Condé Nast Archive of Photography, selections from the Fairchild Photo Service, and signature cartoons from The New Yorker. Highlights of the new release include striking and innovative images from Vogue photographers Clifford Coffin and Louise Dahl-Wolfe, and ravishing food stills by Romulo Yanes.
The Condé Nast Archive is a leading repository of photography, featuring fashion, celebrity, and lifestyle shots from publications such as Glamour, Vanity Fair, and Vogue, dating from the 1890s to the present. The glamour and star power of fashion is represented in the commercial work of Edward Steichen and Horst P. Horst, through to contemporary takes from the runways of international style capitals, including the work of Patrick Demarchelier. The Fairchild Photo Service, comprised of more than three million photos gathered over six decades, is the fashion world’s preeminent image gallery. The New Yorker‘s cartoons are legendary for their incisive wit and for shedding light on the lives and foibles of the city’s dwellers from the Depression through to the era of “fake news.” The magazine’s cartoonists include renowned figures like Peter Arno, Roz Chast, Otto Soglow, William Steig, James Thurber, and Gahan Wilson. Continue Reading »
Posted in Collections, Decorative Arts, Utilitarian Objects & Interior Des, Drawings and Watercolors, Humanities & Social Sciences, Photographs, Release | Leave a Comment »
Coming soon: an improved Artstor
May 23, 2017 by artstor
We’re thrilled to announce that we will be releasing an updated Digital Library this summer. This is a first step in improving our support of digital image-based teaching and scholarship, and toward the longer-term goal of creating an integrated platform experience for users of both the Artstor Digital Library and JSTOR – now both allied services under the ITHAKA umbrella.
Enhancements will include:
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Posted in Organization, Technology, Usability | Leave a Comment »
Top Posts & Pages
A closer look at Hans Holbein’s “The Ambassadors”
Now available: more than 35,000 additional images in photojournalism from Magnum Photos
The enduring significance of Harriet Powers’ quilts
Michelangelo's Last Judgment—uncensored
Now available: additional images from the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
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