Art Information Commons


The Art Information Commons (AIC) is an initiative working to contextualize and surface the diversity of voices, expertise, experience, and practices around the museum’s art information. We are working on this through a more diverse and distributed technological ecosystem, hoping to maximize the use of our data and research systems. By using innovative open source technologies, we are building a distributed ecosystem to un-silo our data and maximize its use, reuse, and findability for research, daily workflows, and insights into our collection.

We’re using the Linked.Art data model, a virtual research environment built using the open source tool ResearchSpace, and a subset of the museum’s data, focused on Black artists, histories, and representation. This includes data and art historical information on Black artists, Black history and life as it relates to the museum and its collection, how Black individuals are represented within artworks, and the collection’s connection to the Enslavement period, such as enslaved artists and materials within our collection that come from the slave trade.

We’re still working on the internally facing prototype, but we look forward to seeing how our data can work smarter and harder for us, and help us work toward social justice in cultural heritage.

The Art Information Commons at the Philadelphia Museum of Art has been made possible by the Mellon Foundation.