Saturday, December 17, 2011

Saturday Sharing (My Finds Are Yours)

Treat today as Discovery Day. Saturday Sharing introduces you to the Bodleian Library's podcast collection, the highly educational New York Times series, "Line by Line" at Opinionator, the online portrait search program of our National Portrait Gallery, the intriguing archive of images from Chandra X-ray Observatory, and the superb print-process resource, Graphics Atlas.

✦ Free digital recordings are available online through Bodleian Library's BODcast collection. The podcasts, delivered via mp3 files, are recordings of special events at the University of Oxford's internationally known library. Among the offerings are readings with Seamus Heaney and other poets, talks on translating Kafka, and audio of choral performances by Schola Cantorum of Oxford. 

While you're visiting the library online, take time for the Centre for the Study of the Book, which maintains some marvelous digital collections, including the original manuscript of The Wind in the Willows, plates from John Gould's ornithological works, and blockbooks and single-leaf woodcut and metalcut prints from the mid-15th Century to 16th Century.

You'll also find such gems as "Treasures of the Bodleian", one of a number of Website exhibitions.

Bodleian Libraries on FaceBook and Twitter 

✦ The Opinionator section of The New York Times is a wonderful resource. Take note, for example, of the series "Line by Line" (September 16, 2010, through December 2, 2010, with last installment the first you'll find at the link), presented by artist and author James McMullan; it addresses line, perspective, proportion, structure, and more, using examples from art history. Others in the series are "The Elements of Math", by Cornell University professor Steven Strogatz;  "Living Rooms", collecting contributions from artists, journalists, design experts, and historians; and "Specimens", by author Richard Conniff. The current series, "Borderlines", by journalist and author Frank Jacobs, began October 24; it examines the history, appearance, and significance of borders.

✦ Did you know you have access to the online portrait search program, Catalog of American Portraits (CAP), on the Website of the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery?  The portrait archives comprises information and images for close to 200,000 portraits of notable American subjects or by notable American artists. This recent post offers some information about CAP holdings.

American Portraits, National Portrait Gallery, on FaceBook

NPG on FaceBook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, and iTunes

NPG Blog Face to Face

✦ Another terrific resource is the archive of the Chandra X-ray Observatory, which also is accessible to the public. A NASA mission operated by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, the archived data range from images of black holes to galaxies to planets.

Here's just one example of the stunning images available:

RCW 86, Oldest Documented Example of Supernova

* The image reflects combined data from four different space telescopes to create a multi-wavelength view of what remains of RCW 86, witnessed by the Chinese in 185 A.D. You'll find more information about the supernova at the link.

Chandra Blog

Smithsonian Institution Photostream on Flickr and Flickr Commons

Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

✦ The realization of retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor's vision to inspire and promote participation in democratic institutions, iCivics is an interactive, Web-based education project to teach students civics. Using a game-based approached, iCivics helps students learn about the United States Constitution and Bill of Rights, concepts such as separation of powers, government budgeting for programs and services, and the workings of county government. Adults, too, might find they can learn something at the site.

✦ The online Graphics Atlas, created by the Image Permanence Institute, Rochester Institute of Technology, is an extraordinary resource not only for print archivists, curators, historians, collectors, conservators, and educators but also the general public. On the site you can take one of 20 guided tours through printmaking (print processes are broadly categorized and then individually identified within each category), compare one process with another, and learn how to identify the distinguishing characteristics of each type of print (e.g., intaglio, gravure, silver gelatin, inkjet, electrophotographic) in four categories (pre-photographic, photomechanical, photographic, and digital). There's a marvelous visual browse feature, as well as a historical timeline, for both the guided tour and compare sections. In addition, the site includes a range of tutorials, a history of and bibliography for Graphics Atlas, and a number of quick-reference guides on materials and preservation. (My thanks for this link goes to the wonderful blog BibliOdyssey.)


Louise Gallagher said...

I bet that if you were to gather up all your Saturday finds (and All Art Fridays too!) you would have an incredible compendium of online richness.

I am so grateful for your willingness to share.

S. Etole said...

I thought of you the other night and wondered how you collect such amazing links to share with all of us.

Claire said...

"All in one boat, we take our strokes
As one, and make good time, reversed.
“Mur-” is our word, and so is “rum.”
Helen knows who used them first."

To Helen by Daniel Bosch