Scholarly publishing? We know there's an app for that.

The Getty's Online Scholarly Catalogue Initiative is pioneering a new dynamic model of scholarly publishing that creatively links works of art with related research material, comparative images, audio, and video. This joint effort by the Getty Foundation and the J. Paul Getty Museum, aims to transform how museums disseminate scholarly information about their collections and make it available through web-based digital formats. This will increase access to museum collections and allow an efficient new way of accessing new information in a timely manner.

Museums have—up until this moment in time—disseminated the scholarly research related to their artworks in printed format. It is a vast undertaking to figure out how to transfer this content to the online environment—not only rethinking how this information can be presented in a digital format, but also taking issues into account such as technical platforms, and legal and administrative problems that arise.

That is why the Online Scholarly Catalogue Initiative brings together nine museums—the Art Institute of Chicago; the Arthur M. Sackler and Freer Gallery of Art; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the Seattle Art Museum; Tate Gallery; the Walker Art Center; and the J. Paul Getty Museum—to frame key issues and work collaboratively on online cataloguing projects. Participants are paying special attention to developing dynamic and interactive forms of information architecture, creatively interlinking works of art with secondary research materials, comparative images, audio, and video.

Art Institute of Chicago's online scholarly catalogue prototype displayed on an iPad. Work pictured: The Beach at Sainte-Adresse, Claude Monet, 1867. Oil on canvas, 29 13/16 x 40 5/16 in. Mr. and Mrs. Lewis Larned Coburn Memorial Collection. 1933.439. Image courtesy of the Art Institute of Chicago.