Staff & Location

Sydney Kilgore
Media Coordinator FAL 5.104, 512-495-4455 or 512-471-4337

Mindy Johnston
Library Specialist, FAL 5.104, 512-495-4194

Mark Doroba
Library Specialist, FAL 5.102, 512-495-4477

Fine Arts Library, 5.104.  Monday through Friday, 9am-5pm.  Hours are subject to change during holidays and intersession schedules. Please call 512-495-4455 or 512-471-4337 if you have any questions.

General Information

VRC Digital Request Form

VRC Image Policies

How to Cite Images
The University of Cincinnati Libraries provides a brief explanation on the proper way to cite images.

Comphrehensive Art Image Databases

This is UT's own digital image archive. The Art & Art History Visual Resources Collection (VRC) can be accessed here.

A digital library featuring over 2+ million images in the arts, architecture, humanities, and social sciences. In addition to keyword and advanced searching, browsing is available by geography, classification, collection, and sample topic.

Art by Region

African and African American Art

New York Public Library Digital Gallery
(NYPL) Free and open access to over 800,000 images that are digitized from the Library’s Collections. Of note in the New York Public Library Digital Gallery Arts & Literature Collections: Africana & Black History, Dance in Photographs and Prints, and the Vandamm archive featuring "theatrical personalities and production" from the 1920s-1957.

National Museum of African Art
(NMAfA) Part of the Smithsonian Institution and the largest collection of African art in the U.S.   Sub-Saharan as well as modern and contemporary art.  Offers advanced searching by classification, name, region, country, ethnic group, artist, date, and object number.

Stanford – Africa South of the Sahara – African Art on the Internet
An extensive annotated list of African Art online resources.

Asian Art

Asian Art Museum
San Francisco, California.  Keyword search and browsing by “Type of Art” of approximately 7,000 images.

Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

The Smithsonian Insitution's Museum of Asian art.  In 2015 scans of their entire collection of 40,000 art works were released online, more than 90% in high resolution, and with no copyright restrictions for non-commercial use.

Yale Silk Road Collection
More than 6,000 images taken during Yale's summer seminars along the Silk Road.

European Art

Art Images for College Teaching
"Emphasis on ancient, medieval, and Renaissance European art and architecture". Copyrighted intellectual property of art historian and photographer Allan T. Kohl (unless otherwise credited) and are licensed for non-profit use. Two different image sizes are available for download.

Bildindex der Kunst und Architektur
This German site contains over 2 million images of art and architecture in over 13 countries. Non-German speakers will find the search fairly intuitive.

Over 2,000 European institutions participating. Millions of items in an interface that can be translated into more than 25 languages. Search results are grouped by Text, Image, Video, and Sound. Refining of search is more powerful once initial search terms are entered. Site takes you back to origianal site of object. Browse by timeline also featured. Translation tool. 

Pre-Raphaelite Online Resource
Hosted by the Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery. More than 3,000 images available.


Rijks Studio The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam launched Rijks Studio, an online presentation of 125,000 works from the Museum’s Collection and allows viewers to freely download any of these images in high resolution format and copyright free.


Database with Travelller's Views of Greece and the eastern Mediterranean from the 15th century to the present.  Supported by the Aikaterini Laskaridis Fondation to promote Greek Culture, especially literature. Material from libararies all over Greece and support comes from the Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundation

Web Gallery of Art
Over 24,000 images of European painting and sculpture from 1000 – 1850.

Your Paintings
212,000 paintings from collections all over Britain – museums, trusts, some private collections.

Islamic Art

Aga Kahn Visual Archive (AKVA)
Over 120,000 slides and digital images of Islamic architecture available for educational use.

Largest online source of International architecture, urban design, landscape design, with special focus on the Islamic arts in Asia and Africa. More recently broadening focus to include architecture that either influenced or was influenced by Islamic architecture. Aga Khan Visual Archive is included in this database.

Contemporary Art

Access Ceramics
Growing Collection of images of contemporary ceramics. Offers searching and browsing by artist as well as by (glazing/surface, temperature, technique,-delete) material, and object type.  Images freely available for upload for education purposes..

Brooklyn Street Art
Look for images of public art, street art, graffiti, and urban art via search box, sphere of tags, “Images of the Week”, or “Categories” drop down menu Images of the artists studios and galleries of New York City and around the world.

Local Artists
New home for the Irving Sandler Artists File. Browse by medium, tag, or region. Search contemporary artists by name or city

Ancient Art

Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection
This Harvard collection focuses on images of Byzantine and Pre-Columbian art, architecture, and archaeology. Browse the collections or use the advanced search by artist, culture, period/date, period/style, object type, and medium.

Perseus Digital Library
The Art & Archaeology Artifact Browser contains information about almost 6,000 Greco-Roman items. Most have images.

Theban Mapping Project
Egyptian Art. Offers many search options to find images from the Valley of the Kings and the Theban Necropolis.


Catalog of Illuminated Manuscripts
Images of Medieval and Renaissance manuscripts.

Digital library of the Bibliotheque nationale de France. Established in 1997 and as of 2012 had over 400,000 images and over 19,000 manuscripts online. Images that are on Gallica can be downloaded for free.


It is good practice to go to the websites of individual museums to find out their policies on downloading images for educational purposes. This is continuously changing, the general trend being towards greater open access by the museums of their images for educational purposes when copyright is not an issue.

The Art Institute of Chicago
This online collection contains more than 45,000 works of which 20,000 have digital images.

The British Museum
More than 533,000 objects have images in this 1.8 million item database.

Brooklyn Museum
More than 91,000 images available. Arts of the Americas and Decorative Arts are two of the larger collections. The Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art is a smaller collection of note. In 2009 the Museum launched Open Collection and contributed digital scans of some of their holdings to Flickr with a Creative Commons License. It also provides images from their collection on ARTstor.

Courtauld Institute of Art
Search over 40,000 high-quality digital images of drawings, paintings, prints, and photographs. Must purchase.

Detroit Institute of Arts
Search over 5,400 images by collection, classification, artist name, artist nationality, medium, or keyword. Prints, Drawings & Photographs is the largest digitized collection.

Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
Searches both the de Young and Legion of Honor museum collections.

Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
Interactive timeline that searches part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s collections.

The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens
6,300 digitized items currently available. The William Morris Collection is the largest represented with over 3,500 images.

Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Online Catalog (PPOC)
Huge collection if images, both national and international in scope. When copyright is an issue, only thumbnails are provided. When images are in the public domain, images are available for download, although resolutions vary. Includes the American Memory Project of digitized American history material

Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
Has just opened up 20,000 high resolution images of works of art in its collection which are in the public domain with no restrictions (about ¼ of all images on their site.) Easy to use website. Can even search by “unrestricted copyright.”

Metropolitan Museum of Art
More than 103,000 works with images can be found. Search can be limited by department and results can be sorted by title, artist, or date. Some publication quality images from the Metropolitan Museum can also be found on ARTstor by searching “Metropolitan Museum of Art” and then finding those that are labeled IAP (Images for Academic Publishing). These are available for downloading for presentations and academic publishing.

National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
Open access to more than 25,000 images believed to be in the public domain. Number increasing. American and European paintings, sculpture, prints, photographs, and decorative arts.

National Gallery, London
Has digitized works and makes them available for educational purposes, but does not provided free downloads.

National Portrait Gallery, London
87,000 free, downloadable high resolution images for academic use.


Rijks Studio
The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam has launched Rijks Studio, an online presentation of 125,000 works from the Museum’s Collection and allows viewers to freely download any of these images in high resolution formant and copyright free. Users are then encouraged to use the images in creative ways.

has 137 million works and has chosen 14 million to be digitized. Currently 860,500 images, video clips, sound files, electronic journals available online, but art works all of low resolution to discourage commercial use.

State Hermitage Museum
More than 15,000 images from the collection of over 3 million items from the State Hermitage Museum located in Saint Petersburg, Russia. The advanced search is a bit easier to use. The browse feature forces a country choice in order to return results.

Virtual Museum of Canada
Over 800,000 images from more than 3,000 Canadian museum collections.


The themed collections are targeted toward K-12 education. However, extensive holdings include collections such as more than 20,000 photos by Dorthea Lange, many of which were previously unpublished.

Flickr Commons
Searches the photo collections of almost 50 institutions, such as the Smithsonian, Brooklyn Museum, and Getty Research Institute.

George Eastman House
Provides keyword search of 400,000 images covering the history of photography. Albumen prints, daguerreotypes, tin types through modern photos are represented in this collection.

Library of Congress Prints & Photographs
More than 1.2 million items available. Many images have larger sizes for display or download. Images, primarily American, include photographs, prints and drawings, posters and architecture and engineering drawings.

LIFE Magazine Photo Archive
Millions of images, many of which were never published before. Information provided on the images is limited.

New York Public Library: NYPL Digital Gallery
Free and open access to over 800,000 images from their Collections of illuminated manuscripts, historical maps, posters, print photographs and more.  Also of note are the of note in the New York Public Library Digital Gallery Arts & Literature Collections: Africana & Black History, Dance in Photographs and Prints, and the Vandamm archive featuring "theatrical personalities and production" from the 1920s-1957.

Cartoons (Humorous Images)

Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum
Images of American printed cartoons – editorials, comic strips, comic books graphic novels sports and magazine cartoons.

British Cartoon Archive
Located at the University of Kent, Cantebury. Over 130,000 cartoons published in British press back to the 1790s. Images available for download for educational purposes.

Duggoons Artoons

Australian artist Peter Duggan has created this site with cartoons having to do with the world of art.  He first creates them for the London newspaper, The Guardian

Costume and Theater

Digital Dress Project
Searches four costume collections including the Henry Ford Historic Costume Collection and the Detroit Historical Museums Costume Collection.

Federal Theater Project
Images include stage and costume designs from 1935-1939. Of interest are productions of Macbeth, The Tragical History of Dr. Faustus, and Power.

Historical Clothing Collection at BYU
More than 2,600 images can be found in this Brigham Young University collection. Search by title, category, or description.

Commercial Sources - Images for Purchase

Over 400,000 high quality images available for purchase from some 8,000 collections and 29,000 artists from museums, galleries, historical societies and artists around the world. Prehistoric to contemporary. Will also take care of licensing concerns.

Getty Images
Stock photo company with over 80 million still images in their collection.

The Lively Morgue
Website of the picture library of The New York Times – some 10 million items, most of which are not yet digitized, but some of which are uploaded each week and available for purchase.

Scholars Resource
Image collections from Saskia, Davis, Hartill, Archivision and Bridgeman – more than 85,000 images. Every period of art.

Other Online Collections

Art Images for College Teaching
"Emphasis on ancient, medieval, and Renaissance European art and architecture". Two different image sizes are available for download.


Source to discover art online with a changing public database of 230,000+ images, from all periods of art, especially contemporary.  Powered by The Art Genome Project, where engineers and art historians assign characteristics to artwork to make searching more efficient in order to connect sellers and buyers. In addition to galleries who show their works for sale,  Artsy also has institutional partners such as the Briitsh Musuem, Musee du Louvre, etc.  Many works are downloadable.

Search by artist, title of artwork, or museum. Results link directly to works of art in museums and other collections. Browse by art movements, name, medium, subject, and nationality.

British Library

The Library has placed on Flickr scans of over one million public domain images from books, including printed illustrations and maps, that date from the 17th to the 19th centureis. Crowdsourcing is invited.

Site hosted by the University of California. The themed collections of California's history are targeted toward K-12 education. However, extensive holdings include collections such as more than 20,000 photos by Dorthea Lange, many of which were previously unpublished.

OCLC’s catalog of rights’ cleared Art Museum Images for educational use. Covers museums and cultures from around the world. Some 95,000 art images in all media.

Flickr Commons
Not just personal collections of pictures on this site.  Has expanded after a joint venture between Flickr and the Library of Congress. Purpose is to increase access to publicly held image collections. Includes images with no known copyright restrictions which you can find by using Advance Search. Growing number of collections like the Library of Congress, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Briitsh Library, etc. are placing their material on this site. You can also help tag these images.

Getty Open Content Program

 (OCP) Some 90,000+ high resoution, open source images from the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Getty Research Institute of images for which these insitutions own the rights or which are deemed to be in the Public Domain.  Can be downloaded for free and without restrictions.  Mininum of 300dpi resoulution and bibliographic record.

Google Art Project

 Launched in 2011. Now more than 45,000 high resolution images from over 151 museums in 40 different countries and available in different languages. Includes virtual gallery tours of participating museums, educational videos, ability to create own gallery of images, zoom in on these images and share. All works from the Google Art Project are available on Wikimedia Commons, except for photos of three-dimensional works or works still under copyright.  Site constantly being updated.  Lacks some global representation

Google Images
Can search by keyword. If go to Advance Search can filter by usage rights and bring up images that are free to use. Also works when you have an unknown image. Do a reverse images search by taking a URL for an image or the image itself image from your computer and then go to Google Images and drop it into the Image Search Bar and find out what it is. Method works best if that image already exists somewhere on the web.

Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) funded sites
Guide to more than 350 cultural heritage digital collections and exhibits from libraries, museums and archives in the United States, with useful links to state by state collections.

Over a million images that accompany articles from academic journals primarily. To get at these images most easily you must use search terms that would be in the captions for these images as they appear in their accompanying JSTOR articles. Go into Advance Search, enter your search terms and for each term entered, choose the qualifier “caption.”

New York Public library, NYPL Digital Gallery
Free and open access to over 800,000 images from their Collections of illuminated manuscripts, historical maps, posters, print photographs and more. Also of note are the Digital Gallery Arts & Literature Collections: Africana & Black History, Dance in Photographs and Prints, and the Vandamm archive featuring "theatrical personalities and production" from the 1920s-1957.

Oxford Art Online
More than 17,900 images,including signatures and monograms.
Searches images on .gov websites. “Filter adult content” is automatically selected, but it can be unchecked in the Advanced Search. “Images” may need to be re-selected after results are returned to get image results instead of links.

An “open, web-based, art history textbook” from the non-profit Khan Academy. Results are presented in short articles with images and videos or in a short video lecture format. Use interactive timeline or browse by time, style, artist, or theme.  Has been criticized for biased western art focus, but that is changing. Multiple languages available. Also have a group of images on Flickr under Smarthistory, where crowdsourcing is encouraged.


Supported by the Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundation to promote Greek culture, especially Greek Literature, by making known the graphic materials found in travel accounts to Greece and the Mediterranean from the 15th century onwards.  Will be updated periodically with material from libraries in Greece.

TinEye is a reverse search engine that searches over 1.5 billion images. When you upload an image TinEye will provide information on other versions of that image that are available and the source of the image.

VADS - Visual Arts Data Service
“Over 100,000 digital images free for use in education.” Search by collection or theme, or use the advanced search feature.

Wikimedia Commons
All media repository. Unlike its partner, Wikipedia, images included here are in the public domain and freely licensed for educational use. Museums such as the Walters Art Museum, the British Museum and other museums are placing their copyright –free images on this site also.

100,000 images. Grew out of California State University Image project. Easy site to browse. All areas of visual imagery from art to zoology. Browse the Art & Architecture Portfolio or search over 80,000 images by Art Form, Style, Nationality, Work or Building Type, City/Site, Historical Era, Materials, Technique, or Century. Especially strong in non – Western art. All images are copyright cleared for educational purposes. Higher resolution scans are available for a fee, but most images fine for power point.

Yahoo Images
If you use your search term and “HQ” (high quality) you will have access to high resoulution images. You can click on the brief metadata below each images to take you to the original link that posted this image. Copyright clearance is often a problem as is quality of the image and metadata. Can qualify your searches from a menu on the left of the screen after you have typed in your search terms.