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Categories for the Description of Works of Art


25. Cataloging History


DEFINITION

Documentation of the creation and modification of the description of a work, including who made the description and when, along with any relevant notes.

SUBCATEGORIES

GENERAL DISCUSSION

This category is used to document the history of the description of a work of art or architecture. It is often called a Revision History of the record.

More than one person may be involved in the creation or revision of a description of a work of art. Each individual, institution, and date should be cited in separate occurrences of the category.

This category is critical for the administrative oversight of the cataloging institution, because tracking the history of who cataloged the work, what each cataloger contributed to record, and on what date changes were made to the record, are critical in maintaining quality control and charting the progress of a cataloging project.

Some institutions may wish to make this information available to the researcher. Cataloging history is interesting to the researcher because it can be used to assess the accuracy and reliability of a description of a work of art or architecture. Descriptions that were written a long time ago may not reflect recent discoveries or trends in scholarship.

RELATED CATEGORIES and ACCESS

The sources of the information contained in the description of the work should be indicated in the categories RELATED TEXTUAL REFERENCES and RELATED VISUAL DOCUMENTATION and in the CITATIONS subcategories for each category.

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25.1. Cataloging Institution

DEFINITION

The institution with which the individual who wrote or revised the description of a work is affiliated.

EXAMPLES


- National Gallery (London, England, UK)
- Library of Congress (Washington, DC, USA)
- Monastery of Santa Maria Novella (Florence, Italy)
- Utmali Museum (Umtali, Zimbabwe)
- Museum of Contemporary Art (Los Angeles, California, USA)
- Cartographic and Architectural Archives Division, National Archives of Canada (Ottawa, Canada)
- Indiana University (Bloomington, Indiana, USA)
- independent scholar




DISCUSSION and GUIDELINES

Optional: Record the name and location of the institution that cataloged or described the work of art or architecture. For museum objects, this is typically the repository. Historical records of descriptions may be included.

Form and syntax
Follow rules for constructing names in the PERSON/CORPORATE BODY AUTHORITY.

If the cataloger is not affiliated with an institution, use a value such as N/A or independent scholar.



TERMINOLOGY/FORMAT

Authority: Control this subcategory with the PERSON/CORPORATE BODY AUTHORITY.

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25.2. Cataloger Name

DEFINITION

The name of the individual who wrote, recorded, or revised information about a work.

EXAMPLES


Gatta, Joey
Katterman, Louis
Felino, Leonard A.
Amurra, Juliet
unknown


DISCUSSION and GUIDELINES

Optional: Record the name of the individual responsible for creating or altering the catalog record or description of the work of art or architecture. For museum objects, this is typically a person employed by the repository. Historical records of descriptions may be included.

Form and syntax
Follow rules for constructing names in the PERSON/CORPORATE BODY AUTHORITY.

Allow for the expression of uncertainty, such as unknown.



TERMINOLOGY/FORMAT

Authority or Controlled List: Control this subcategory with the PERSON/CORPORATE BODY AUTHORITY. Alternatively, maintain a controlled list of logins and passwords for those authorized to edit or create records.

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25.3. Cataloger Action

DEFINITION

The action performed by the individual when creating or revising the record.

EXAMPLES


- created
- updated
- added
- deleted
- approved
- published


DISCUSSION and GUIDELINES

Optional: Record a term identifying the type of action done to the record. Use lower case.

Actions may include creating a new record, adding or changing information to a particular field in a record, or deleting information in a record. Ideally, these actions would be tracked automatically by the computer cataloging system. If not, they should be recorded in the REMARKS note.

TERMINOLOGY/FORMAT

Controlled list: Control this subcategory with a controlled list, including the terms in the Examples above, and other terms as necessary.

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25.4. Area of Record Affected

DEFINITION

The area or fields of the record that were affected by the cataloger's ACTION .

EXAMPLES


- title
- creator
- condition history
- work type
- subject


DISCUSSION and GUIDELINES

Optional: Record a term identifying the type of action done to the record. Use lower case.

Depending upon local requirements for keeping track of individual changes to the record, the choices may be limited to certain areas of the record (as in the Examples above), or the full list of fields may be among the choices.

TERMINOLOGY/FORMAT

Controlled list: Control this subcategory with a controlled list, including the terms in the Examples above, and other terms as necessary



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25.5. Cataloging Date


DEFINITION

The date or date and time when an ACTION was done.

EXAMPLES



2000-05-02 13:05:25
July 11, 1994, 9:25AM
12 April 1984
1993
September 1674
before 1872
ca. 1545


DISCUSSION and GUIDELINES

Optional: Record the date when the action took place.

Form and syntax
Depending upon local practice, a display date field may be used, or the action may simply be automatically time stamped by the computer system (e.g., in the first examples above). The date may then be displayed in various formats, as needed.

If you are recording historical descriptions in this category, it is recommended to include a free-text display date field, so that nuance and expressions of uncertainty may be recorded as necessary. Follow the applicable rules for display dates in CREATION - CREATION DATE.



TERMINOLOGY/FORMAT

Free-text: This is not a controlled field. Maintain consistent capitalization, punctuation, and syntax where possible. Index the dates in the controlled EARLIEST and LATEST DATE subcategories

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25.5.1. Earliest Date 

DEFINITION

The earliest date when the ACTION was done.

EXAMPLES


2000-05-02 13:05:25
1420

-900


DISCUSSION and GUIDELINES

Optional: Record the earliest date indicated in display DATE. Always record years in the proleptic Gregorian calendar.

If cataloging activities are being automatically time stamped by the computer system, this date may be the date automatically generated by the system. Whereas, for all other Earliest and Latest Dates in the CDWA, both Earliest and Latest Dates are required, for this subcategory it is acceptable to use a single automatically generated date and time in compliance with local practice.

Form and syntax
Follow the applicable rules for display dates in CREATION - CREATION DATE - EARLIEST DATE.


TERMINOLOGY/FORMAT

Controlled format: Date information must be formatted consistently to allow retrieval. Local rules should be in place. Suggested formats are available in the ISO Standard and W3 XML Schema Part 2.


ISO 8601:2004 Representation of dates and times. International Organization for Standardization. Data Elements and Interchange Formats. Information Interchange. Representation of Dates and Times. Geneva, Switzerland: International Organization for Standardization, 2004.

XML Schema Part 2: Datatypes, 2001. www.w3.org/TR/xmlschema-2/.




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25.5.2. Latest Date 

DEFINITION

The latest date when the ACTION was done. 

EXAMPLES


2000-05-02 13:05:25
1521
9999


DISCUSSION and GUIDELINES

Optional: Record the latest date indicated in display DATE. Always record years in the proleptic Gregorian calendar.

If cataloging activities are being automatically time stamped by the computer system, this date may be unnecessary, given that it would always be identical to the EARLIEST DATE automatically generated by the system. Whereas, for all other Earliest and Latest Dates in the CDWA, both Earliest and Latest Dates are required, for this subcategory it is acceptable to use a single automatically generated date and time in compliance with local practice.

Form and syntax
Follow the applicable rules for display dates in CREATION - CREATION DATE - EARLIEST DATE.


TERMINOLOGY/FORMAT

Controlled format: Date information must be formatted consistently to allow retrieval. Local rules should be in place. Suggested formats are available in the ISO Standard and W3 XML Schema Part 2.


ISO 8601:2004 Representation of dates and times. International Organization for Standardization. Data Elements and Interchange Formats. Information Interchange. Representation of Dates and Times. Geneva, Switzerland: International Organization for Standardization, 2004.

XML Schema Part 2: Datatypes, 2001. www.w3.org/TR/xmlschema-2/.


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25.6. Remarks

DEFINITION

Any notes or comments about the process of cataloging the work, or of creating or modifying the description of it.

DISCUSSION and GUIDELINES

Optional: Record any editor's notes or other comments on the precise actions performed on a record by a particular cataloger.

TERMINOLOGY/FORMAT

Free text: This subcategory is not controlled.



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25.7. Object/Work Record ID

DEFINITION

A number used to uniquely identify the Object/Work record to the computer system.

DISCUSSION and GUIDELINES

Optional: It is optional but highly recommended to use persistent unique numeric identifiers for the Object/Work record in the computer system. Typically, such numeric schemes are composed of a consistent, defined range of integers (e.g., 12 number sequences, such as 100000000123). Alternatively, numbers may be applied sequentially beginning with number one. Numbers used for this purpose should be tied to, but typically not the same as, the CURRENT LOCATION-REPOSITORY NUMBERS.

TERMINOLOGY/FORMAT

Controlled format: This subcategory is automatically generated and controlled.



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EXAMPLES


[for an object in a museum]
1. Cataloging Institution: Marshall Museum of Fine Arts (Macinaw, Connecticut, USA)
    Cataloger Name: Katterman, Louis
    Action: created
    Area of Record Affected: record
    Date: 1983-12-19 08:19:23
        Earliest Date: 1983-12-19 08:19:23
        Latest Date: 1983-12-19 08:19:23
    Remarks:
2. Cataloging Institution: Marshall Museum of Fine Arts (Macinaw, Connecticut, USA)
    Cataloger Name: Gatta, Joey
    Action: added
    Area of Record Affected: title
    Date: 1990-05-30 11:11:02
        Earliest Date: 1990-05-30 11:11:02
        Latest Date: 1990-05-30 11:11:02
    Remarks: JG 1990-05: I added the exhibition title from "Greatest Hits of the Marshall"
3. Cataloging Institution: Marshall Museum of Fine Arts (Macinaw, Connecticut, USA)
    Cataloger Name: Gatta, Joey
    Action: updated
    Area of Record Affected: creator
    Date: 1992-06-11 09:54:10
        Earliest Date: 1992-06-11 09:54:10
        Latest Date: 1992-06-11 09:54:10
    Remarks: JG 1992-06: The attribution was changed, so we added a new creator.


[a reference to a historical description of an object]
Cataloging Institution: Villa I Tatti, Harvard University (Florence, Italy)
Cataloger Name: Berenson, Bernard
Action: created
Area of Record Affected: record
Date: 1943/1945
     Earliest Date: 1943
     Latest Date: 1945
Remarks: The work was originally cataloged by Berenson, based on his personal observation of the work, photographs, and documentation from the dealer


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NOTE: The outline numbers are subject to change; they are intended only to organize this document.

Revised 8 September 2008