Boating - Édouard Manet, 1832–1883 Paris. (The Metropolitan Museum of Art)

The Metropolitan Museum of Art has made available access to more than 400,000 digital images in its collection. The Met joins a growing number of museums making its archive open to the public online, including the American Museum of Natural History, which we reported has made more than 7,000 images available to download.  

The museum is calling this new program 'Open Access for Scholarly Content', which provides 'access to images of art in its collection that the museum believes to be in the public domain and free of other known restorations'. Any images listed with the letters 'OASC' on the museum’s website are available to download without a fee. 

The Met has stated the program was developed for 'students, educators, researchers, curators, academic publishers, non-commercial documentary filmmakers, and others involved in scholarly or cultural work' but doesn’t address the use of the images on commercial websites, blogs or publications. 

Before these images were made available for free, the museum required a request to be made and a fee to be paid. 

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