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Image Resources: Middle East Studies

Yale University's Arts Library Digital Services guide to digital image resources.

Middle East Studies Image Resources

Arab Image Foundation

The Arab Image Foundation is a non-profit organization established in Beirut in 1997. The Foundation’s mission is to collect, preserve and study photographs from the Middle East, North Africa and the Arab diaspora. The collection holds more than 400,000 photographs. 


ArchNet is an international online community for architects, planners, urban designers, landscape architects, conservationists, and scholars, with a focus on Muslim cultures and civilizations. This part of their website contains access to thousands of images available for educational use.

Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology

The Creswell Archive contains many photographs of Medieval Islamic architecture.

British Museum, Resources for Middle East Studies

The collection includes materials from Turkey, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Jordan, the Palestinian National Authority, Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco and Sudan.

Brooklyn Museum, Lantern Slides of Ancient Egyptian sites

Historic photographs captured as lantern slides documenting Egyptian archaeological sites during the late 19th and early 20th centuries

Casselman Archive of Islamic and Mudejar Architecture in Spain (University of Wisconsin)

This collection contains over four thousand color slides and black and white photographs of medieval Spain taken by the late Eugene Casselman (1912-1996) during his thirty years of travel throughout the Iberian peninsula. The majority of the images focus on the Mudejar style, an ornate court style largely inspired by Spanish Islamic architecture that was shared among Islamic, Jewish, and Christian cultures during the later Middle Ages in Spain. 

University of Chicago Middle East Photograph Archive

The Middle East Department of the University of Chicago Library maintains an archive of early photographs of the Middle East

Griffith Institute, University of Oxford

Images related to Egyptology.

University of Haifa: Historical Photographs of the Land of Israel

The Web site allows access to the library's historic photograph collections of Israel according to theme, contributor or geography. 

Government of Israel Press Office photostream on Flickr

Library of Congress: Abdul Hamid II Collection

This monumental collection portrays the Ottoman Empire during the reign of one of its last sultans, Abdul-Hamid II. The 1,819 photographs in 51 large-format albums date from about 1880 to 1893.

Library of Congress: Matson Photograph Collection

The G. Eric and Edith Matson Photograph Collection is a rich source of historical images of the Middle East. The majority of the images depict Palestine (present day Israel and the West Bank) from 1898 to 1946. Most of the collection consists of over 22,000 glass and film photographic negatives and transparencies created by the American Colony Photo Department and its successor firm, the Matson Photo Service.

Musee Achemenide

The virtual Achaemenid museum is a multimedia-rich interactive website focusing on the Achaemenid Empire (ca. 560 to 330 BC), also known as Persian Empire.

New York Public Library Digital Gallery: Middle East in Early Prints and Photographs

Several thousand prints and photographs contained in works from the 17th century to the beginning of the 20th century. 

Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago

The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago is among the leaders in the recovery of the history, languages, and cultures of the ancient Near East. In the halcyon days of the 1930s, when universities and museums conducted expeditions on a scale now unheard of, Oriental Institute teams worked in nearly every country of the Near East.

Turkish Cultural Foundation Image Archive of Turkish Art

This archive is a digitalized slide repository, created from the professional collection of Prof. Dr. Nurhan Atasoy, Art Historian and Senior Scholar at the Turkish Cultural Foundation.  

Virtual Museum of Iraq


WAMA: Williams Afghan Media Project

The Williams Afghan Media Project (WAMP) is an online resource for the study of Afghanistan. In addition to helping to preserve and make available resources related to Afghanistan, WAMP also provides a site for exploring Afghanistan's cultural legacy, historical development, and present situation. 


QTVR of architecture in the Middle East from the History of World Architecture Web site, Columbia University

Expore mosques in Iran and Turkey  ARTstor's Middle East study guide

Study Islamic art in the Oxford Art Online and related topics in Middle Eastern art and architecture

The G. Eric and Edith Matson Photograph Collection is a rich source of historical images of the Middle East.