| Could we understand 20th century art, not only by looking at artists and tendencies - but by also examining those moments when the art met its public, that is through, the history of the exhibition?
Exhibitions can offer rare glimpses of both an aesthetic and a social milieu. The trappings of the exhibition - invitation cards, leaflets and most critically catalogues - embody an invaluable archival resource. They tell us not only about the scope of works on show, but who showed with whom, the graphic style of the day and styles of writing.
Exhibitions: Art Meets Public
| Exhibitions are for Modern and contemporary art an important, if not the most important media. Their structure varies from solo-exhibition to large biennials, their focus may be presenting new art work, comparing different positions, focusing on a specific theme, giving a retrospective overview, accompanied by important texts and surveys. However, the access to exhibitions as an important source of information is very limited if not impossible without digitization.|
Exhibitions show the individual profile of the different types of exhibition venues. A gallery, a museum, a non-profit or collector's venue has its own scope of artists or conceptual focus, of local, national or international relevance.
| The same for artists, artist estates or curators: The exhibition history is an important part of the individual profile and the recognition of the artist or curator across decades. To know who shows with whom is good to know for each profile, in particular regarding group exhibitions. artist-info.com provides this most valuable insight and makes it easy to explore and discover by cross-linking all information, across decades, borders or barriers, short or long living, current or legacy venues.
Since the end of the 19th century a number of exhibitions were groundbreaking and influential for the development of the different styles and concepts. See our selection in our blog post 'Influential Contemporary Art Exhibitions in the 20th and 21st Century', each with the complete list of participating artists.
Art History 4.0
| An exhibition is an archival object in its own right. Many are accompanied by a catalog, many of them not. Documenting an exhibition starts with an index of the shown artists. Providing this index is the focus of artist-info.com. |
The artist name is the first and most important search string in art research. The result search engines are offering is a high number of pages with possible match combinations.
Different to the cloud like result of search engines, documenting artists and their exhibitions with artist-info.com database provides a most efficient access to this important source of information and makes exhibitions and in particular their catalogs searchable, from the end of the 19th century up to the present, worldwide.
| By cross-linking all the information the profile of artists, exhibition venues, and curators can be researched across decades, different geographic regions, and different types of venues with a mouse click.
As the exhibition catalog title is in most cases identical with the exhibition title the catalog's artist index is equivalent with the documented exhibition on artist-info.com be found through artist-info.com search. This makes exhibition catalogs the first time searchable by the exhibited artists and is an important advantage to find artwork and related texts.
No future without the past
|Documenting only exhibition activities of the last 10 years without the exhibitions of the last decades, the 20th century, would deliver incomplete research results. Our research projects and reconstructing of exhibition histories is another surplus artist-info.com is offering. More about these projects on our blog, category Research and History.||As venues are coming and going the artist remains for the art world the corner stone and anchor across decades. This was the reason to name our main page artist-info, on which we publish digitized exhibition information since November 1996 on the Internet, based on our database which we started in 1993.|
New authority control for artists, exhibition venues, curators
| As digitized content is growing securely identifying an artist by the name has become vital.|
Thieme-Becker/Vollmer dictionary, published between 1907 and 1962 in 37 + 6 volumes, provides an unrivaled source for identification and artist biographies of earlier decades and centuries. Based on artwork in auctions another source to identify artists and finding at least short biographical information are databases like artprice.com.
To identify digitized data the authority files of libraries and archives worldwide summarized on VIAF.org are an important key index. Unfortunately many artist names, exhibition venues, and curators will never have a VIAF Id.
| artist-info.com is a new and reliable source for artist name authority control, based on the artist's exhibition information and the biographical details published in conjunction with them. This role of artist-info.com and its artist master database, including many hundred alias names, is even more important, as many artist names will never appear in authority control sources connected to VIAF.org (Virtual International Authority File) or LCCN identities (Library of Congress Control Number Authority File).
To complement an artist's, exhibition venue's, or curator's profile on artist-info.com we are adding whenever possible a Wikipedia page and WorldCat.org/identities/ page, which include authority and VIAF information.
Get found, not lost
| Daily, art professionals and art lovers are on our artist-info.com website to research artists, galleries, museums, non-profit and collector's venues and their exhibitions.|
Today artists, exhibition venues, and curators have their own website with their current, past and future solo- and group-exhibitions. It is an important testimony of their activities and profile.
The disadvantages of your local exhibition archive page
|Your exhibition archive page is an important part of your exhibition venue's website. This local testimony has advantages but also disadvantages.|
- Your exhibition history is hardly found by search engines.
- The artist names, exhibition venues and curator names aren't interactive to find out more on them.
|- In most artist-CVs group exhibition details are missing.
- Art professionals and art lovers are searching on a wider scope and your individual page might limit them too much.
- Different spelling of artist names and aliases create inefficient search engine results.
Documenting your exhibitions on artist-info.com is advantageous
|- as your individual profile, your legacy and recognition don't get lost in the haystack of search engine results in an increasingly digitized world|
- to show your focus and concept
- for the individual profile of your exhibition venue
- for positioning among all other exhibition venues
|- as cross-linking all information offers new insight
- regarding the selection of artists
- regarding the work of curators
- as an artist index of your exhibition catalogues
- one master database for all artist names, including their aliases
The Role of ExhibitionsA - Art exhibitions are since many decades the #1 media to make artwork visible to the public, to reconsider concepts, and styles, nationally, internationally.
They are archival objects in their own right.
B - Looking into exhibition information, making exhibition information searchable from 1880 up to the present, is indispensable to reveal its important value.
C - Exhibitions outline the profile of artists, galleries, museums, non-profit and collector's venues, and curators. They are fundamental for self-understanding, branding, fundraising, future development, networking, public awareness, breaking new ground, finding new contacts, finding new clients.
D - These profiles are only understandable in comparison with other profiles.
E - Group exhibitions are of particular importance to show the difference in the artist's individual profiles and to revalue their distinct position and concept. To better understand, explore and develop this important positioning artist-info is visualizing the many hundreds of exhibition connections with other artists.
By documenting always all participating artists of group exhibitions our visualizingartnetworks.com offers new, groundbreaking insight.
F - Artists, exhibition venues, and curators are connected among each other through exhibitions. Each of them is reinforcing their profile through exhibitions.
Exhibition Information SourcesG - Exhibition catalogs are an important resource for artwork, texts, and new research results.
H - Making all artist names, which are the key information of solo- and group-exhibitions, searchable across all exhibition venues and their exhibitions is a major benefit for research.
Find out how influential exhibitions can be with our compilation www.artist-info.com/blog/influential, each exhibition with all participating artists.
I - The relational structure among artists, exhibition venues, curators is used by artist-info.com to cross-reference all exhibition information.
J - In libraries exhibition catalogs can only be searched by exhibition title/subtitle and the text authors, but not by their key content, the exhibited artists – By including exhibition catalog titles in its search results artist-info.com helps with the lists all participating artists of an exhibition to make library holdings searchable.
K - The common way is a one-dimensional structure: An artist or venue lists the solo- and group-exhibitions like on a piece of paper. No search-engine finds this information.
|L - Without artist-info.com the artists of exhibitions couldn't be researched across venues and decades. The selected artwork and critical texts published in catalogs as well as the investigative work of curators vanishes with the time because of the missing digital access to the artist index of exhibition catalogs.
M - artist-info documents exhibition histories multi-dimensional on an interactive timeline to research with a mouse click the artist, exhibition venue or curator in this time line.
The Artist's NameN - Across all decades the artist name is the key to everything. That's the reason for our website's name 'artist-info'
O – Master artist name database: Our database proves to be a new authority file for artist names, based on secure and reliable information of exhibitions. VIAF.org and the many attached national (LOC, BNF, DNB-GND, RKD …) or institutional (Getty ULAN® , wikidata…) authority controls will never be able to cover this many names like artist-info through documenting exhibitions. Secure identification of the artist's name is fundamental for a digitized content.
P - The more digitized content can be reached the more important becomes efficient data research. Search result of search engines is a cloud of combinations of the search string parts. Search result of artist-info.com's 1:n relational content provides secure and precise results in a professional, art-bound data-environment.
Q - Thieme-Becker/Vollmer published between 1907 and 1962 in 37 + 6 volumes, is an unrivaled source to look up artist names of earlier decades. artprice.com is based on artwork in auctions. artist-info.com is a new pillar for art world research as it is based on exhibition information, which is not part of artist name dictionaries.
The Art World's Many Different ElementsR - Why is artist-info.com unique: The art world is very much fragmented. Nations concentrate on their cultural heritage, art museums are grouping among each other in favor to strengthen their profile, the success of galleries depends very much on their individual profile. Artists are strategically planning their career to may be having one day a solo exhibition at the MoMA.
artist-info.com is documenting exhibitions across all these barriers and borders to make all elements searchable and visible.