Obtaining permission to use copyrighted images can be inconvenient, so the Getty Trust's willingness to make available its images to the world wide audience for "fair use" without permission is welcome news.
From the home page:
The Getty makes available, without charge, all available digital images to which the Getty holds the rights or that are in the public domain to be used for any purpose. No permission is required.
Please see the related press release and Getty president and CEO Jim Cuno's announcement on The Getty Iris for additional information.
Why Open Content?
The Getty adopted the Open Content Program because we recognized the need to share images of works of art in an unrestricted manner, freely, so that all those who create or appreciate art—scholars, artists, art lovers, and entrepreneurs—will have greater access to high-quality digital images for their studies and projects. Art inspires us, and imagination and creativity lead to artistic expressions that expand knowledge and understanding. The Getty sincerely hopes that people will use the open content images for a wide range of activities and that they will share the fruits of their labors with others.
Access to Open Content Images
Initially, the images available through the Open Content Program are of works in the J. Paul Getty Museum's collections. Over time, images from the Getty Research Institute and the Getty Conservation Institute will be added. Museum images can be found on the Museum's Collection webpages or on the Getty Search Gateway. Those available as open content images are identified with a "Download" link. Images provided are JPEG files at a minimum of 300 DPI. See the Guidelines for Successful Printing (PDF) for more information on file format.
If you need new photography, resizing, or color correction, you can request those services by Contacting Museum Rights & Reproductions. A fee (PDF) will be charged for this service.
Public Domain and Rights
Open content images are digital surrogates of works of art that are in the Getty's collections and in the public domain, for which we hold all rights, or for which we are not aware of any rights restrictions. Rights restrictions are based on copyright, trademark, privacy and publicity laws, and contractual obligations. If an image you want is not designated as an open content image, it is because one or more of the above identified legal rights restricts our ability to make that content available under this program. While the Getty reviews the metadata about each picture before making it available as an open content image, there may be some underlying rights that were unknown to us. For that reason, we strongly recommend that users consider the possibility that rights of third parties may be involved, and permission for those rights may need to be obtained by the user for the proposed use.
Attribution to the Getty
Please use the following source credit when reproducing an image:
Digital image courtesy of the Getty's Open Content Program.When using open content images, you should not suggest or imply that the Getty endorses, approves of, or participated in your projects.
Publications Using Open Content Images
While there are no restrictions or conditions on the use of open content images, the Getty would appreciate a gratis copy of any scholarly publications in which the images are reproduced in order to maintain the collection bibliography. Copies may be sent to the attention of:
Open Content ProgramFrequently Asked Questions
The J. Paul Getty Museum
1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1000
Los Angeles, CA 90049
Get answers to frequently asked questions about the Getty's Open Content Program.