Alinari Photography Archive and Museum, Florence
The collections of the Alinari family photography firm tell a fascinating story of history and continuity in photography, and the Alinari Archive is an immense fund of 3,500,000 photographs, some 300,000 of which have been digitized and archived on the Alinari site for commercial and educational use. The Fratelli Alinari Museum of the History of Photography exhibits work from the Archives, often focusing on important Italian and non-Italian photographers of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. In Italian and English. Founded in Florence in the early years of the medium, Fratelli Alinari, has worked continuously in the field while also dedicating itself, on a grand scale, to the conservation and exhibition of historical and contemporary photographic work.
“Promoting conservation through the power of wildlife imagery,” ARKive means to be a visual record of the natural world, as well as a resource to support and inform conservation and to raise public awareness. Partnered with the world’s definitive directory of endangered species, IUCN Red Lists, and showcasing the work of many of the most recognized wildlife photographers and filmmakers, ARKive may well become the most accessible repository of images and films depicting plants, animals and natural places of the earth, many of which are endangered. Watch the site’s eye-catching video, narrated by Sir Richard Attenborough, for a succinct overview of the non-profits contents and aims
Art Institute of Chicago
The AIC’s impressive photo collection was kick-started in 1949 by Georgia O'Keeffe’s donation of a significant portion of the Alfred Stieglitz Collection, some of which can be seen in the nearly 10 000 digitised photos available on the site. Other important bodies of work include Edward Weston, Paul Strand, Eugene Atget, and André Kertész. The Mary L. and Leigh B. Block Photography Study Room makes the AIC’s 18,000 item collection available to researchers. The Photographic Society, a group of photographers and photo-related professionals, works to fund and promote the museum’s photo collection.
Belfast Exposed Image Archive
Belfast's long-lived contemporary photo gallery commissions, exhibits and publishes a variety of new photographic work, but it is also a keeper of the city’s turbulent history, recorded in the collections of the gallery’s Community Archive. Built from the contributions of amateur and professional photographers, and spanning the past 30 years, the archive represents a nuanced history of political, cultural and social change in Northern Ireland. The gallery posts a compelling weekly selection of featured images from the Archive.
BBC In Pictures
The BBC has expanded its mandate in the era of web communications by seeking the images and viewpoints citizen photojournalists the world over. The pick of amateur works share pages with professional photography. News In Pictures is a leading example of the democratization of media. This is a web project that upholds photography, and the knowledge it brings, as a means to change and advance the world. Stunning color photography and award-winning web design perfect the mix.
The Bigger Picture
A blog is an excellent medium for the Smithsonian Institute, an institution with undertakings so vast and varied that its Archives document everything from new smart phone apps from the Museum of Natural History to photos of early 20th century palaeontology expeditions by Smithsonian teams. In fact, it is nearly impossible to summarise the content posted on The Bigger Picture in any given week, which is what makes it such a fascinating feed. Expect the unexpected from an archive that has some of the best of America’s historical, scientific and cultural material to work with.
Calisphere - Online Archive of California
A treasure trove of digital information, the University of California’s Calisphere is a search engine that offers access to the digitized riches of many Californian archives. The content is easily searchable, both by historical themes and through an alphabetical index. Here you will find images of everything from the Gold Rush to farm labor camps to vintage gas stations. Content also includes maps, legal and financial records, manuscripts, letters and diaries, oral history transcripts, leaflets, historical records, architectural and engineering records, artwork, scientific logbooks, electronic records, sound recordings, and other documents that are held in libraries, museums, and other institutions throughout California. The Calisphere is open to everyone, from students, teachers and researchers to the curious.
Center for Creative Photography, Tucson
Part of the University of Arizona, the CCP manages one of the largest photo collections on the continent. Emphasizing North-American photographers, the Center opens its collections to the public, offering print viewing for the general public and consultations of the archives and collections by appointment. The collections are also the base for the CCP educational mandate, which features lectures, seminars, free public education programs, research fellowships and internships.
Cleveland Museum of Art
The Cleavland Museum's site provides a substantial gallery of meticulously described digitized images, which span from 19th century French and British daguerreotypes and calotypes to contemporary works by likes of Aaron Siskind and Sally Mann.
Critical Past Archive
A substantial archive of digitized 20th century photographs and film footage collected from U.S. government sources, Critical Past offers its clients easy access to a substantial collection of vintage news reels, military and war footage, as well as propaganda and educational films from many countries. The Archive has excellent search mechanisms and a large set of parameters that make sifting through the offerings easy. Wisely, they use their home page to its best advantage, scrolling through a random sampling of historic footage selected by year and creating a fascinating juxtaposition. Use their “Your Birthday in History” search feature to see what else your birthday is famous for.
Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives
War correspondent and Life Magazine photojournalist Eliot Elisofon had a long and varied career that often led him to Africa, and the legacy of these trips is an 80,000 item archive of photographs and transparencies that document aspects life in different areas of Africa from 1947 to 1973. It is perhaps Elisofon’s abiding interest in African art that inspired him to donate this collection to the National Museum of African Art, where selections of this historically important collection can now be viewed through the Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS). The rest of Eliot Elisofon’s considerable archive now resides at the University of Texas at Austin’s Ransome Center.
George Eastman House, Rochester NY
The George Eastman House, home of the man who reshaped the photographic medium for 20th century, could be called the spiritual home of photography, particularly as the historic house and grounds have been converted into the museum that shelters one of the largest photo collections in the world. 400,000 prints and negatives, spanning the history of the medium and featuring some of its greatest artists make up the collection. Keeping the story of photography and film alive and vital through collections, exhibitions, film series, events and lectures – not to mention Flickr, Twitter and a regular podcast - George Eastman House is considered to be a reference in the field.
Griffin Museum of Photography
Time, Life and Saturday Evening Post photojournalist Arthur Griffin left an important legacy to his medium when he founded this small Boston-area museum dedicated entirely to photography. Situated in a 19th century mill building, the Griffin Museum uses its exhibition spaces and programs to deepen the public experience of photography in its many aspects. The Museum’s three distinct gallery spaces allow the curatorial team to offer established and emerging photographic visions, all the while extending the Griffin’s range by mounting smaller photo exhibitions in retail and cultural venues in the Boston area.
Gordon Parks Foundation
The Foundation assembles, preserves and disseminates the work of Gordon Parks, a legend of 20th century photography who documented some of the most important social and political issues of his era, always with framed with his profound respect for human dignity. The Foundation’s Archive page presents a wonderful selection images from Parks’ varied career, and there is a regular update of recent exhibitions, publications and events that feature his work. The Foundation also takes an active role in supporting young photographers with scholarships that include the Nikon/Gordon Parks Photography Scholarship for emerging photographers, and the HBO/Gordon Parks Scholarship for Ghetto Film School Students, which reminds us that Parks was also the filmmaker responsible for the classic "Blaxploitation" film Shaft.