Nowadays you have a lot of chances to find freely available online images of artifact or pictures that you need for study or research purposes.
The question is: can I reuse these pictures?
In this post I analyze the copyright policies and permissions of some of websites and databases that allow you to download art images.
The Artstor Digital Library is a nonprofit resource that provides over 1.6 million digital images in the arts, architecture, humanities, and sciences with an accessible suite of software tools for teaching and research.
This database is not free because a subscription is required. IMT Library subscribes to this resources, so you can browse and download images from our Internet connection or from compupers in the Library.
Images downloaded by clicking the "Save" icon in the image viewer within the Digital Library may not be used in publications, except for student papers, theses, and dissertations (provided the dissertations are not distributed widely).
Thanks to the Open Content Program, currently there are more than 87,000 images from the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Getty Research Institute available, including more than 72,000 from the Research Institute's Foto Arte Minore archive. Other images include paintings, drawings, manuscripts, photographs, antiquities, sculpture, decorative arts, artists' sketchbooks, watercolors, rare prints from the 16th through the 18th century, and 19th-century architectural drawings of cultural landmarks.
Open content images can be used for any purpose without first seeking permission from the Getty. The Getty supports fair use of images when the applicable legal criteria are met.
This website offers access to a wide range of images linked to European culture and history. Europeana is not the owner of images, for this reason each file has its own licensing information (currently there are 12 rights statements describing the different terms on which re-use is permitted.
Every item record makes available the link to the provider's website, where it's possible to fine more information about the image and view it larger or in its fullest form.
With the launch of NGA Images, the National Gallery of Art implements an open access policy for digital images of works of art that the Gallery believes to be in the public domain. Images of these works are now available free of charge for any use, commercial or non-commercial. Users do not need to contact the Gallery for authorization to use these images.
Few days ago the Director of Metropolitan Museum of Art announced that more than 400,000 high-resolution digital images of public domain works in the Museum’s world-renowned collection may be downloaded directly from the Museum’s website for non-commercial use—including in scholarly publications in any media—without permission from the Museum and without a fee. The number of available images will increase as new digital files are added on a regular basis.
Low resolution files downloaded from the NYPL Websites may only be used for personal, educational, or research purposes. High resolution digital files of photos in the Library’s Digital Gallery are available for editorial and commercial use for a reproduction fee.
In cases where materials on the NYPL Websites are protected by third party rights, you are responsible for clearing the necessary rights in order to use the materials in question.
They finally ask users to credit NYPL when using the downloaded material by linking directly to the permalink provided or, if no permalink is provided, via the URL on which the material is found. If you use material from our website offline, we ask that you credit the Library as follows: “Courtesy of The New York Public Library. www.nypl.org”