Open-source platform maps artwork provenance

Screenshot of Mapping Paintings, showing the migration of Titian’s “Europa” (screenshot via mapping paintings.org)Launched by Boston University professor Jodi Cranston, Mapping Paintings is an open-source, searchable platform for compiling provenance data for individual artworks (not just paintings, despite its name), from owners to past locations to details of sales or transactions. It allows you to select artworks of interest and visualize their records across time and space, as plotted on a map.

It’s still in the early stages of development, but one particularly neat feature of Mapping Paintings is that it lets you filter through its database and overlay the paths of selected artworks on one map. So you can compare how different pieces by the same artist have traveled or where artworks currently owned by the same museum came from.

Besides contributing new individual entries to the database, users can also publish what the site deems a “project” — a custom-made map tracking the movement of any number of artworks whose images you upload and whose provenances you enter yourself. All projects are sent to an administrator for review; only those that are accepted as accurate will be added to the online library.

via Hyperallergic

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