375,000 Images Given Open Access At The Metropolitan Museum Of Art

The Metropolitan Museum Of Art Makes 375,000 Art Pieces Available Online For Free

New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, otherwise known as the Met, has announced that it made 375,000 public domain art pieces available online for free for anyone.

While many pieces in the 375,000 collection were already in the public domain, the museum revised its open access policy so that everyone has a right to use them.

According to the policy, per 19 news in Cleveland, the museum waived any copyright to open domain works. Along with the images, the database information regarding each image will be available to the public for free use.

With the policy, the Met announced new partnerships with outside sources like Wikimedia, the Digital Public Library of America and Pinterest.

Chief officer Lois Tallon wrote in a blog on the Met’s website about how important it was to consider the online audience as a part of the museum experience.

Starting for the Hunt by Aelbert Cuyp (1652-53).
Photo: Metropolitan Museum of Art.

“We expect these partnerships to become an ever-larger component of the Digital Department’s work. We’re privileged to serve over 30 million visitors on our website each year, which we see as the canonical source for information about the collection; but if we want to connect the collection to three billion individuals around the world, we know that they’re never all going to come to metmuseum.org,” read the blog post.

Viewers can access the images by visiting the museum’s collection and clicking “public domain works.”

The news is groundbreaking for art-lovers outside of the tri-state area of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, because they now have a way to view the art without having to visit the museum.

In 2014 the Met had a recorded 6.3 million visitors making it one if the most visited museums in the world. There are 1.5 million pieces ofa rt spanning 5,000 years from all over the world in the museum.