Screenshot of the new website via the Barnes Foundation

In celebration of its fifth anniversary in the heart of Philadelphia, the Barnes Foundation has made fine art enthusiasts very happy by boosting the collection’s accessibility. What’s the news?

The Barnes Foundation recently launched a new website that allows audiences to search thousands of works from its permanent collection based on a number of personalized criteria. In celebration of the foundation’s fifth anniversary in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, users will be able to download high-resolution images of over 1,400 works that are now in the public domain.

Led by Shelley Bernstein, Barnes Foundation deputy director for audience engagement & chief experience officer, and funded by a grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the new online tool is the first in the museum field to search holdings with a deep focus on visual properties such as light, line, color, and space, rather than requiring users to be familiar with artist names or art historical movements.

According to the press release, “This project extends into the digital realm the same pioneering approach Dr. Albert C. Barnes used to display his collection in ensembles — combining masterpieces by artists such as Cézanne, Renoir, Matisse, and Van Gogh with ancient, medieval, Renaissance, and non-Western art as well as metalwork, furniture, and decorative art.”

Learn more by exploring the new website here.

This article was featured in Fine Art Today, a weekly e-newsletter from Fine Art Connoisseur magazine. To start receiving Fine Art Today for free, click here.

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Andrew Webster is the former Editor of Fine Art Today and worked as an editorial and creative marketing assistant for Streamline Publishing. Andrew graduated from The University of North Carolina at Asheville with a B.A. in Art History and Ceramics. He then moved on to the University of Oregon, where he completed an M.A. in Art History. Studying under scholar Kathleen Nicholson, he completed a thesis project that investigated the peculiar practice of embedded self-portraiture within Christian imagery during the 15th and early 16th centuries in Italy.


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