Art Radar explores ARTLINKART, one of the largest, most comprehensive and interactive Chinese contemporary art databases currently in operation.
ARTLINKART is an online database project for Chinese contemporary art. Bilingual, interactive and updated daily, the website is an invaluable resource for art professionals, investors, students and art enthusiasts.
What is ARTLINKART?
Launched in May 2009, ARTLINKART is a bilingual online database for Chinese contemporary art. To date, the database has archived over 29,600 artists, 24,500 exhibitions and 1,750 art spaces in China. Describing itself as a basic information register for everything from academic study to investment reference and other professional purposes, ARTLINKART summarises its objective as follows:
ARTLINKART is targeting on archiving the complete Chinese contemporary art history more accurately and subjectively.
An ever-expanding database
ARTLINKART is updated daily as administrators process submissions of information, photographs and artist profiles, and the promised auditing time is around 48 hours. Anyone can contribute, whether they are gallerists, artists or simply art lovers.
Artists, curators and critics have the additional option of setting up a personal art profile, which is also added to the extensive database and network of art-related persons. Meanwhile, gallerists have the option of submitting information for entire exhibitions, big or small.
During submission, critical information is filled out in specific categories, such as title, dates, venue, organisers, sponsors, curators, artists and so on, to enable easy searching once the information is uploaded.
The resulting database is searchable and sortable through a large variety of parameters, including date, type and geography for exhibitions. Artists and curators are divided by geography, type of work and whether they are currently exhibiting.
An interactive community
Once an event is listed on the database, art lovers and fans can submit on-scene photos of exhibitions, which serve to enrich the event’s online profile. This interactive element likens the website to a community where everyone can play a part in contributing to the ever-expanding archive of art-related information.
With or without art
A sister site to ARTLINKART is entitled theWOWA.com, which stands for ‘with or without art’. Also updated daily, the site presents itself as a powerful newsfeed that pulls together data from a large pool of global art information providers.
Partners are diverse and wide-ranging, including e-flux, Rhizome, ArtAsiaPacific, Artagenda, Yishu-online as well as The Guardian. As the articles appear, they are accompanied by a time-stamp that reveals when the article was originally published.
Art that is free for all
To date, ARTLINKART and theWOWA.com remain free databases, accessible to all art lovers. Certain parts of both websites remain under construction, but a massive amount of data has already been collected. It seems that the current focus is to continue to gain a critical mass of users, partners and information. Whether a user fee will be introduced in the future remains to be seen.
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