Portrait Index

The digitisation of a second two-part series of the DFG Project “Digital Portrait index of the printed graphic images of the modern period” is in progress.

Under the leadership of the German Documentation Centre for Art History – Image Archive Photo Marburg, over 200,000 portrait engravings of the past four centuries were digitally developed and made available online. The digitisation of selected collections took place in two parts and under the guidance of CD-LAB Nürnberg and CDS Gromke e.K. With the successful completion of the first part, portrait engravings from seven institutions are now being digitised in the second part.

The highest demand for quality in very tight timeframes required a high degree of logistical planning. One part of the collection is even being digitised at the site of the collection.

Through a five-stage format sorting and the separate treatment of oversized portraits, even the given parameters of the DFG were exceeded. While the digitisation of the engravings with conventional digital cameras can result in colour errors and artefacts, these errors were avoided with the 4shot-reception-procedure. Even at high magnification, the subtleties of the line drawings of the printed graphics were clearly recognisable.

Over time, together with the digitisation process, the sheet and record volume as well as the inventory numbers were incorporated into a checklist. The scans were released in the final and concluding process.

IIn the first part altogether 47,000 scans were generated by CDS Gromke e.K./CD-LAB Nürnberg. In the second part more collections are to follow:

  • the Leipzig University Library,
  • the Berlin State Library – Prussian Cultural Heritage,
  • the Art Collection of Veste Coburg,
  • the LWL – National Museum of Art and Cultural History, Münster,
  • the Germanisches National Museum, Nuremberg,
  • the National Graphic Arts Collection, Munich and
  • the Gleimhaus Halberstadt.

Also collections from:

  • the German National Library, Frankfurt am Main,
  • the Austrian National Library, Vienna and
  • the Duke August Library, Wolfenbüttel

are digitised and delivered in terms of other technical standards.

More information on the development and the online database is available at www.portraitindex.de.

François Langlois: Bildnis Karls I., König von England (1600-1649), (nach Anthonis van Dyck). Kupferstich, 40,5 x 27,7 cm, Universitätsbibliothek Leipzig, Inv. Nr. 8/174.


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