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Getty Ends Support for Bibliography of the History of Art, Offers Free Web Access
Art historians and librarians from Europe and the U.S. met on April 20 at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art to discuss "The Future of Art Bibliography in the 21st Century." The objective of the gathering, convened by the Getty Research Institute (GRI), was to "launch a serious discussion within the art historical community about what a sustainable, collaborative, and truly international art bibliography might look like and how it might be achieved."
GRI recently withdrew financial support from the Bibliography of the History of Art (BHA), due to its current budget crisis. BHA is a searchable database of periodicals, books, exhibition and dealer's catalogs, conference proceedings, and bibliographies concerning the visual arts. GRI's budget is $216 million this fiscal year, a $68 million reduction from last year.
GRI had assumed sole oversight of the BHA in 2007, when its French partner, the database publisher Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique (INIST)-CNRS, withdrew from the project. In a blog post (http://blogs.getty.edu/iris/the-future-of-art-bibliography/), GRI explained the situation:
The GRI then sought a partner to defray the additional annual cataloguing costs and to help transform the BHA into a truly global resource, expanding its traditional focus on European art to include Asian, African, and Latin American art. After two years in which no institution stepped forward to assist with the BHA, the GRI decided to cease updating the database.
Recognizing, however, the scholarly importance of the information previously catalogued, the GRI is now making the BHA universally and freely available online at http://www.getty.edu/research/conducting_research/bha/, vastly expanding its accessibility to students and scholars worldwide.
Source: Getty Research Institute (www.getty.edu)
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