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Image Resources: Digital Collections

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


Digital collections are often curated by institutions such as universities and museums to share digital surrogates of their physical collections (though some include born digital works as well). The access to view and download these images varies, but it is good practice to seek image sources straight from their owning institution when possible. 

Yale University Digital Collections

Resources marked with this symbol      indicate that ithe resource is only accessible either on campus or via VPN (Virtual Private Network) if you are off campus. All active Yale NetIDs are automatically authorized to use the VPN service.  Read more about VPN here.

Yale Visual Resources Collection   

The Visual Resources Collection is a digital library of over 370,000 images of global art and architecture. Faculty in the Arts and Humanities at Yale are welcomed to submit requests for new digital content. This site allows users to create groups of images, annotate them, add outside content to the groups as well as share them.


Yale University Digital Collections

The cross-collection search includes over 600,000 images in selected Library Digital Collections. For a listing of collections covered by the search, or for individual collection access, see the Advanced Search page. For a listing of all collections see Digital Collections by Name. Some of the collections are only available on campus or via VPN.  The site also includes a suite of teaching and learning tools, such as making a gallery/group of images and annotating it, available for patrons with a Yale NetID.


Yale University Art Gallery

Search the Gallery's image database of over 80,000 objects from the Gallery's comprehensive collections of world art from antiquity to the present.


Yale Center for British Art

Search across the Yale Center for British Art's online catalogue, currently representing over one hundred thousand records from the Center's collections.


Yale University Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Digital Library

Search 250,000 digitized images of photographs, textual documents, illuminated manuscripts, maps, works of art, and books from the Beinecke's collections.

Digital Collections Beyond Yale University

Access to over two million artifacts, artwork, and images from the British Museum collections.

Portal to millions of photographs, maps, drawings, documents and more from cultural institutions across the country.

Millions of digital images, artworks, books, music and more from European museums, galleries and libraries.

Search for images at the Getty, including a selection of open content images available for download.

Google’s online platform for access to high-resolution images of artworks across partner museums and institutions.

Access to thousands of images from Harvard University art museums

Thousands of Maps, photographs, drawings, illustrations, archival materials and oral histories related to American history made available by the federal government.

Search millions of photographs from the Life Magazine photo archive, from 1750s to the present.

Thousands of images from the Met collections, many of which can be download and used. Search for Open Access Artworks.

51,000 open access images available for download from the National Gallery of Art collections.

More than 800,000 images digitized from the New York Public Library’s collections, including prints, photographs, maps, manuscripts, streaming video and more.



Images in FindIt and Arts Library Digital Collections

Image Source Note

Many of the images in the Visual Resources Digital Collections are scans from books, slides, or reproductions in our collection.  Information on the original resource can usually be found in the Source Note or Call Number field of the item record.  Please consult the original source for information on the image’s copyright.

Digital Collection Image Source


Rights, Reproductions, Permissions

The copyright of a work of art itself is distinct from any rights of the photograph or digital image depicting the work and may be held by individuals or entities other than the Robert B. Haas Family Arts Library. Yale Library cannot grant permission to use images of works held in its collection where copyright is held by other entities. While use of such images may be possible under “fair use” or “fair dealing” provisions in the copyright laws of some jurisdictions, the Arts Library is unable to advise image users in making legal determinations.

If you believe that the Robert B. Haas Family Arts Library is the rights holder (unique holdings or special collections), please contact us at