Odalisque by Jean-Auguste Dominique Ingres, 1830
By Sara Barnes
You don’t have to travel the world to see great art. As museums continue to digitize their collections, you can view paintings, sculptures, and other artwork that spans thousands of years and geographical locations. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) has worked for the past two years to make their acquisitions viewable online. There are 20,000 images available and in the public domain, making them also free downloadable art for anyone. Altogether, the museum has uploaded 80,000 works on their website with both restricted and unrestricted use—a quarter of the art that’s in their physical collection.
It’s easy to find an image that will inspire you. The robust online search is sorted via highlights, chronology, curatorial area, and more; it’s a great place to start. If you’re looking for something more specific, however, they’ve tagged individual works with their defining attributes. Typing in the word “cactus”, for instance, will bring up photographs, paintings, and objects having to do with the plant. You can even choose the option to filter only images that are in the public domain.
Check out a small sample of what you can find on the LACMA art website, including works by artists like Mondrian, Cezanne, and Degas.
The LACMA art museum has digitized a fraction of their collection and put it online—including 20,000 images of free downloadable art.
Here’s just some of what you’ll find (and is the public domain).