New Image Collection: Images of Ancient Music

Corinth Temple Ruin. Photographer: Timothy J. Moore.

Scholarly Publishing is proud to announce the launch of a new image collection, Images of Ancient Music. The project was brought to Scholarly Publishing by Professor Tim Moore, the John and Penelope Biggs Distinguished Professor of Classics and Director of Undergraduate Studies.  The collection, hosted in ARTstor’s Shared Shelf Commons, contains images of museum artifacts, musical instruments, and buildings from antiquity and also landscapes of important sites around the world, such as Rome and Pompeii. These images were originally hosted in an online collection at the University of Texas at Austin, where Professor Moore taught before coming to Washington University. Scholarly Publishing would like to thank colleagues at UT Austin for providing the images and metadata for this project.

This project provided an opportunity to work with new tools and workflows, as the metadata provided by UT Austin came to us in json files, which we had not worked with previously. The images themselves did not need any processing since they had already been hosted in an online collection and merely need to migrate to a new asset management system. ARTstor Shared Shelf uses spreadsheets to organize metadata, so the json files needed to be transformed to that format. To expedite this process, I used OpenRefine, which is often used to clean up messy data, but also served as a tool to convert json files to a spreadsheet. Although some manual labor was required to ensure the metadata was accurate, most of the work was done automatically using OpenRefine. The spreadsheet was then uploaded to Shared Shelf to batch update each image record.

Images of Ancient Music currently contains over 900 publicly available images, with more to be added in the future. Washington University users can access more than 500 additional images and audio files in the ARTstor Digital Library. For information on how to access ARTstor Digital Library, see the Modern Graphic History Library’s Libguide.

About the author

Please contact Shannon Davis at: ssdavis@wustl.edu