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User’s Guide: Navigating NGA Online Editions

National Gallery of Art Online Editions (Œ) presents the most current, in-depth information on the Gallery’s collections by the world’s leading art historians along with rich capabilities for exploring that information. A customized reading environment is intended both to provide scholars with a useful workspace for research and to encourage the study and appreciation of art.


NGA Online Editions has a home page for the series as a whole and a separate home page for each edition within the series.  

Each page within the series is identified by a gray navigation bar near the top of the page bearing the Πlogo and the series name followed by a short title of the edition. This bar also appears on every object (work of art) page or apparatus page associated with an edition. Links in this bar allow you to navigate to either the main Πhome page or the home page for a specific edition.

From the menus on the home pages, you can explore catalogs by artist or work, or access additional research material.

In addition to the Πbar at the top, every object page and artist page includes a gray Πtoolbar further down the page (not visible on some mobile devices).

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Object Page

The object page is where you access all Œ content for a particular work of art—the catalog entry, images, notes, technical summary, and more. The default view is the Overview, a brief summary of the work’s significance.

From an object page, navigate to the artist page by clicking on the artist’s name, or return to the Œ home page or to the edition’s home page by clicking on the appropriate title in the upper gray Œ navigation bar.

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Artist Page

Navigate to artist pages by browsing the Artists menus on either the NGA Online Editions home page or the edition home page. From an object page, click on the artist’s name.

Here you will find the artist’s biography and bibliography. From this page, you may explore other works by the same artist, some of which may take you into the Gallery’s general collections and out of the Œ catalog you are exploring.

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The features of the Œ toolbar are Reader ModeCite, PDF, Archived Version(s), and Search.

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Click the Cite button on either an object or artist page to produce a window with a preformatted citation for the content associated with that page. The citation is formatted according to the Chicago Manual of Style, 16th edition, and includes a permanent URL and date of access. The text may be copied and pasted into another program.

The preformatted citation refers to the text on the day it is accessed. The surrounding elements (such as provenance, exhibition history, and bibliography) may be updated on a daily basis. Archived versions are available through the Œ toolbar.

Preformatted citations are also provided for entire editions by clicking the Cite button on each edition’s home page.

Similar citations also appear at the foot of the PDF for an object or artist.

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To print or download a PDF of an object or artist page, click the PDF button in the Œ toolbar and then click PDF in the window that opens. The PDF is then available to download or print.

From an object page, the PDF includes the object image and tombstone information, entry and notes, comparative images, provenance, exhibition history, bibliography, and technical summary. A preformatted citation appears at the foot of the PDF. (The Overview and Related Content are not included in the PDF.)

From an artist page, the PDF includes artist information and variant spellings, an image or self-portrait of the artist (if available), biography and notes, and a selected bibliography (if available). A preformatted citation appears at the foot of the PDF.

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Archived Version(s)

Archived Version(s) may include an entire edition or single objects/artists, depending upon the page from which the user accesses them.

From the home page of an edition, click on Archived Version(s) to produce a window in which all versions of that catalog are listed by date of issue. Select a version to download or print the catalog in its entirety. A permanent URL will always return you to the selected version.

From an object page, click on Archived Version(s) to produce a window in which all versions of that particular object entry are listed by date of issue along with a link to a permanent URL for each version. Select a version to download or print.

From an artist page, click on Archived Version(s) to produce a drop-down window in which all versions of that particular biography are listed by date of issue along with a link to a permanent URL for each version. Select a version to download or print.

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To search within a particular edition, type the name of an artist, work of art, or keyword into the search field in the gray Œ toolbar (“search this Œ catalog”). Navigating the site from here will keep you within the designated edition.

To search the entire NGA website from an Œ page, type a keyword into the search field at the top right. This leads you outside NGA Online Editions to a comprehensive search results page. To return to Œ, use your browser’s back button.

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Compare Images

From an object entry, click the Compare Images link beneath any comparative image (or simply click on the image itself) to go to a split-screen image viewer. Here you may view any two images side by side. In the case of technical images, additional tools in the viewer allow for cross-fading, locked zooming, and measurement.

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Image Restrictions

While you may export and/or print an Œ catalog in whole or part, you are not otherwise authorized to reproduce, publish, or distribute comparative images that do not belong to the National Gallery of Art. For use of images in the Gallery’s collections, visit our Open Access page.

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