The National Gallery of Art has long been committed to making its art freely available to the world through its open-access initiatives. In 2018, the Gallery began extending this commitment by working with the Wikimedia Foundation, one of the largest supporters of open knowledge and culture, to donate its collection of open-access images and data to Wikimedia platforms to support open culture, research, and education. To date, the Gallery has contributed 53,000 high-resolution images of artworks to Wikimedia Commons and 120,000 art object collection records to Wikidata.
Every image and collection record on Wikimedia Commons and Wikidata is available under a Creative Commons 0 (CC0) license. A CC0 license means that the image or records are freely available to use without restriction – no need to ask for permission – and for any purpose. As a courtesy to the Gallery, we encourage users to include the credit line: Courtesy National Gallery of Art, Washington.
Wikimedia Commons presents visitors and users with a range of new and exciting ways to engage directly with the Gallery’s collection. Beyond easy viewing, downloading, and linking, anyone can use the images to enhance Wikipedia articles, such as adding portraits to biographies or illustrating historical events and concepts. Wikipedia is also available in hundreds of languages, enabling users from across the world to use the Gallery’s images in a truly global manner. Every image also comes with embedded metadata that describes the artwork.