The J. Paul Getty Trust is committed to making images of its public domain artworks freely available through its Open Content Program. A few weeks ago, they added more than 5400 images from the Getty Research Institute's special collections, bringing the total to more than 10,000.
These high-resolution images span centuries and continents, and include artists' sketchbooks, drawings and watercolors, rare prints from the 16th through the 18th century, 19th-century architectural drawings of cultural landmarks, and early photographs of the Middle East and Asia. Over the coming months, we'll supplement these images with other material critical to the study of art history, including artists' books and letters, stockbooks of famous art dealers, documentary photographs of art and monuments in situ from around the world, important historical treatises, and archives of famous artists, photographers, and collectors.
The Open Content images in the Getty catalog include over 1200 religious pieces — paintings, drawings, illuminated manuscripts, sculptures, and other decorative objects. One that caught my eye is an illuminated intial S from the Book of Job. It was created by a 15th century Florentine artist named Francesco di Antonio del Chierico.
The contrast between the beautiful floral border and the despondent figure of Job enclosed by the lower loop of the S is striking.
Take a look for yourself. What artworks strike your fancy?