Archives, collections, and reference materials form the fundamental building blocks of all scholarly research. The Foundation's grants for research resources developed and strengthened these materials, making them accessible through print and electronic publication. Funding in this area included support for institutions to: process significant archives; catalogue and publish museum collections; strengthen art history research centers; and increase access to important reference works for the field. We also had a particular interest in supporting early efforts related to the use of digital technology and online access. Today we continue to support access to archival and museum collections through initiatives such as Pacific Standard Time and the Online Scholarly Cataloguing Initiative (OSCI). Below are some highlights of our past grants in this area.


Archival posters
 
Documents of 20th-Century Latin American and Latino Art
For years scholars had recognized that specialists of Latin American and Latino art from the 20th century lack of access to critical primary source materials. This has been particularly true in many Latin American countries, where economic, political, and infrastructural challenges have prevented scholars from studying substantial numbers of relevant archival documents. With the support of Getty grants, the International Center for the Arts of the Americas (ICAA) at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston is leading an effort to recover and publish these resources. ICAA set up and oversaw research teams in 14 different countries responsible for the identification and collection of key sources. Their findings are now available online free of charge, and project staff continue to add new archival materials. These resources are also compiled in a multi-volume print publication. The interest in Latin America continues in the form of the initiative Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA.

Grants awarded: $250,000 (2004), $150,000 (2008)



 
Ferdinand Columbus Print Collection Catalogue and Publication
Two grants awarded to the British Museum supported the research and publication of the print collection of Ferdinand Columbus (1488–1539), best known for a biography of his father, Christopher Columbus, and for his extraordinary private library. The project originated with the discovery of a rare 16th-century manuscript in Spain listing over 3,000 engravings, woodcuts, and maps in Columbus's collection. An initial Getty grant enabled scholars to transcribe the 16th-century copy, reconcile it with a 19th-century inventory, and identify and document 1,500 surviving prints. A subsequent grant supported the publication of a two-volume scholarly catalogue on the prints. Highlights from the collection were featured in a 2005 exhibition at the British Museum.

Grants awarded: $180,000 (1999), $115,600 (2002)



Han art publication
 
Han Dynasty Carvings
Founded in 2002, the Han Art Institute at Peking University is one of only three research centers in China devoted to the art of the Han Dynasty (206 BC–220AD). Getty support helped the Institute develop a digital database of more than 800 stone and brick carvings excavated in northern Shaanxi province that offer unique possibilities for the study of the development of Han pictorial and religious traditions. The project also led to a 10-volume print publication, Iconography of the Han Dynasty, which was awarded the "Zhongguo Chuban Zhengfu Jiang" in 2013. Roughly translated as the "Government Awards for Chinese Publications-Books," the award is given every three years to just a few publications spanning all genres, including literature, art, and science.

Grant awarded: $130,000 (2006)



Florence cathedral
 
Years of the Cupola
This database project provides unprecedented access to the documentary sources of the administration of Florence Cathedral, Santa Maria del Fiore, during the early 15th century when Brunelleschi's famous dome was built. The voluminous records contain information about the construction of the building, works created for the cathedral by well-known artists such as Lorenzo Ghiberti and Paolo Uccello, and the Board of Works for the cathedral. For more than 100 years scholars had a vision of gaining control over these materials, but only now have electronic tools made such access a reality. A Foundation grant to the Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore made it possible to complete the transcription, annotation, editing and data input for a relational database designed by an art historian in consultation with historians, linguists, scientists, and programmers.

Grant awarded: $142,000 (2000)



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