The Archives & Access project takes the largest archive of British art in the world and makes it accessible to national and international online audiences, through an ambitious programme of digitisation, learning and participation. This is made possible through a £1.9 million grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund
The Tate Archive contains a rich array of artists’ materials, including photographs, sketchbooks, diaries, letters and objects, documenting the lives and working processes of British born and émigré artists, from 1900 to the present from more than 800 archive collections. Tate has digitised its collection of around 70,000 artworks and through the Archives & Access project will digitise 52,000 items from a selection of artists’ archives with a regional flavour. Integrating these items with the online collection will allow people to search, browse and make links between archive items and collection works. In addition we are developing an interactive learning hub which will allow online users to group, tag, annotate and share their own collections of artworks and archive items, as well as accessing the new learning resources that we will produce through the project, including films, online slide shows and downloadable written materials.
Through an associated learning programme, new audiences will be able to engage with these materials and create their own multimedia resources to be published online. These have been enabled through an embedded outreach programme in partnership with cultural and social organisations across five areas of Britain: South Wales; Liverpool and Merseyside; Tyne and Wear; Margate and Greater London.
Finally, the Archives & Access project includes the creation of six new dedicated learning and public gallery spaces at Tate Britain, featuring a Digital Learning Studio, and the Open Archive, the first gallery at Tate dedicated to displaying library and archive items, as well as interactive digital versions of artists’ sketchbooks.
Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund