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Release Date: March 26, 2015

ARLIS/NA Announces 2014 George Wittenborn Memorial Book Award

Dutch Paintings of the Seventeenth Century by Arthur K. Wheelock, Jr., a National Gallery of Art Online Edition

Fort Worth, Texas (March 23, 2015) – Dutch Paintings of the Seventeenth Century by Arthur K. Wheelock, Jr., a National Gallery of Art Online Edition (http://www.nga.gov/content/ngaweb/research/online-editions/17th-century-dutch-paintings.html), was awarded the 36th annual George Wittenborn Memorial Book Award at the Art Libraries Society of North America's annual conference held in Fort Worth, TX, March 19-23, 2015. Established in 1980, the Wittenborn Award honors the memory of George Wittenborn, a premier New York art book dealer and publisher, and is given annually to North American publications demonstrating excellence in art publishing.

Dutch Paintings of the Seventeenth Century comprehensively documents approximately 130 paintings in the National Gallery of Art's collection of Dutch 17th century paintings, which is one of the finest in the world. This publication is an online version of a 1995 print collection catalog that both expands upon the original and provides seamless access to it. As such, the electronic version does not supplant the print, but serves as a companion – albeit one that considerably enhances and amplifies it in an online environment. This peer-reviewed catalog includes entries for each work written by Curator of Northern Baroque Paintings and author of the 1995 catalog, Arthur J. Wheelock, Jr. Additional information about provenance, exhibition history, bibliography, technical aspects, and high-resolution digital images are also provided, along with robust scholarly apparatus. The committee praised the site's overall visual design, intuitive navigational elements, and well thought out information architecture. This exemplary open access electronic catalog blends the best of a traditional scholarly catalog with digital discovery and access tools and multi-media resources, thereby greatly expanding its audience and potential reach. As part of the National Gallery of Art's larger initiative to provide online access to its collections, Dutch Paintings of the Seventeenth Century points the way for new models for art publishing and the development of both print and electronic resources of enduring value.

Judy Metro, Editor in Chief, National Gallery of Art, says that "The National Gallery of Art is greatly honored to be the recipient of the 2014 George Wittenborn Memorial Book Award for its digital catalog Dutch Paintings of the Seventeenth Century by Arthur K. Wheelock, Jr., which is the first release in the National Gallery's ongoing initiative to digitize and provide open access to the museum's permanent collection catalogs.  This publication owes its existence to the generosity of the Getty Foundation and its Online Scholarly Catalogue Initiative, which brought the Gallery together with seven other museums seeking unique digital solutions to the presentation of collection scholarship online. In equal measure, it is the result of an extraordinary collaboration within the Gallery among the publishing, curatorial, conservation, collection records, technical, web, and imaging teams. The digital platform created for this project serves as the foundation for National Gallery of Art Online Editions, an entire series of catalogs devoted to the permanent collection and planned eventually to document some 5,000 works of art."

"The selection of Dutch Paintings of the Seventeenth Century acknowledges a transformational achievement in art historical publishing, says Carole Ann Fabian, ARLIS/NA President and Director of the Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library at Columbia University. The National Gallery of Art's online catalog, an extraordinary work of documentation and scholarship, demonstrates that digital editions provide opportunities for deep exploration of the collection, accessible to all readers. Its elegant, intuitive design and eminently readable text, are enhanced by a feature-rich set of visual tools that enhance our experience of these beautiful works of art. Our congratulations to the author and to the National Gallery of Art for this work and their ongoing commitment to open access publishing."

The members of the 2014 Wittenborn Award Committee are: Shalimar Fojas White, Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection (chair); Sarah Osborne Bender, American University; Anna Simon, Georgetown University; Tony White, Maryland Institute College of Art; and Kathy Woodrell, Library of Congress.

About the Art Libraries Society of North America

Founded in 1972, the Art Libraries Society of North America is a dynamic, international organization of more than 1,000 individuals devoted to fostering excellence in art and design librarianship and image management in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The membership includes architecture and art librarians, visual resources professionals, artists, curators, educators, publishers, students, and others interested in visual arts information. To serve this diverse constituency, the Society provides a wide range of programs and services within an organizational structure that encourages participation at all levels.

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Dutch Paintings of the Seventeenth Century
by Arthur K. Wheelock, Jr., a National Gallery of Art Online Edition

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