Art on Screen on CD-ROM
Most people in the art history field are aware that The Program for Art on Film (an “international clearinghouse” for information on media on the visual arts) produces the Art on Screen Database. This invaluable resource provides a comprehensive index to films, videos, and videodiscs, dealing with almost any topic related to art, from sculpture and painting to folk art to crafts to aesthetics to techniques. Now the entire database, with more than 23,000 records, is available as Art on Screen on CD-ROM(G.K. Hall & Co.). It is a superbly designed program. First off: you can run it directly from the CD-ROM, which is always a welcome option. Instructions, both on-screen and in the accompanying manual, are clear and logical. You can search in any number of ways: by title, by artist, by subject, by period, and so on. You can get a Brief or Full description, Tag records, Save to a file, or Print. Each record has information on the subject, credits, country, language, length, format, and distribution. The bulk of the entries are from 1970 on, but some productions from 1915 to 1969 are included. Future editions of the disc will include interactive multimedia and CD-ROM titles in the database. Art on Screen on CD-ROM is expensive ($495) and most of us don’t need it in our home libraries, but for anyone who does or for institutions like universities and museum libraries, it’s worth every penny.
– November 1995