Interactive Media

media in CD-ROM format

2010 edition


(above: Samuel Lancaster Gerry, Old Man of the Mountains near Profile House, White Mts., 1886, oil on canvas, 61 x 48 inches, The Sullivan Museum and History Center. Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons*)



Interactive Media is a catalogue published by Traditional Fine Arts Organization (TFAO) since 2003. Each item focuses on representational art.

Media are cross-referenced in TFAO's catalogue Topics in American Art, which contains links to thousands of Resource Library articles and essays by topic. Each topic also contains links to other online texts from museums and other sources, online video and audio recordings, plus references to topical videos in DVD and VHS format, paper-printed books and articles.

Contents are valuable to educators designing course content, scholars, students and librarians conducting research, plus art lovers everywhere seeking greater understanding of American art. Enjoy!


American art from the Howard University Collection is a 2000 CD-ROM produced by Howard University Television (WHUT-TV), Howard University Radio (WHUR-FM) and Information Systems and Services, based on "a national touring exhibition. This major exhibition and conservation project was a three-year collaborative effort by a network of cultural institutions. It was organized by the Addison Gallery of American Art and The Studio Museum of Harlem, in association with the Williamstown Art Conservation Center, Howard University, and five other Historically Black Colleges and Universities." (left: American art from the Howard University Collection cover image courtesy of Howard University)


The National Gallery of Art has a loan program of educational materials including: American Art from the National Gallery of Art. "A compendium of more than 2,600 works by American artists, ranging from Gilbert Stuart to Winslow Homer to Jackson Pollock. Full-frame images of the works are identified with captions, and about five close details of each work are shown. The objects included represent virtually all of the National Gallery's collections of American paintings and sculpture, as well as a large number of works of art on paper-drawings, watercolors, prints, and renderings from the Index of American Design. Because of the random access capability of videodisc technology, the images and details can be shown in any sequence and related to the theme and subject of choice. The still-frame archive of images is complemented by motion photography of selected paintings from the eighteenth to the twentieth century, presenting a brief history of American painting. A bar code index and interactive software are available as supplements to the laserdisc. Printed index of the still-frame section, bar code index "

The CD-ROM titled American Visions: Journeys Through Art, Act One, includes almost 190 pieces of art from the Neuburger Collection which is a collection of 20th century American art. The Neuburger Collection is composed of approximately a thousand works of art. It is predominately a collection of paintings but also includes collages, sculpture, prints and drawings. Some of the sculptures are displayed in QT-movie-format which means that they can be viewed from different angles. The 1994-published CD-ROM is available from Eden Interactive, 224 Mississippi Street, San Francisco, CA 94107.

Audubon's Birds of the Carolinas, from the Education Department at the North Carolina Museum of Art

Changing Image of California, The was developed in conjunction with the 1999 exhibition Pacific Arcadia: Images of California 1600-1915. This educational CD-ROM examines the development of California through primary visual sources ranging from early maps and lithographs to oil paintings, photographs, and picture postcards. Corresponding text and questions stimulate dialogue. A "zoom" feature allows users to examine any image closely for details such as watercolor brushwork, artists' signatures, map legends, and street signs in photographs. The accompanying printed guide (36pp/fully illustrated) provides suggestions for classroom discussion and activities. (from Cantor Arts Center / Stanford University)

Early American Art, a Window on History and Culture is a comprehensive and interactive CD-ROM from the Worcester Art Museum. Early American Art provides five study areas, study tools and extensive curator's notes. A preview is available on the Museum's Web site.

History Through Art: Early American History, allows viewers to gain an understanding of the government, social life, religion, and art of each of the nine great eras of civilization. The CD-ROMs contain audiovisual presentation, with the text linked to a complete 24-volume encyclopedia, as well as many quizzes.

Inventing the Southwest: Fred Harvey and Native American Art is a CD-ROM developed with the support of the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Museum Collections Accessibility Initiative and the National Endowment for the Humanities. (available through the Heard Museum)


The Magical Worlds of Joseph Cornell is a 2003 DVD-ROM, produced by the Voyager Foundation, "containing nine of Cornell's films in full - only one of which is commercially available elsewhere" - took four years to complete. The Magical Worlds of Joseph Cornell won a 2004 MUSE Award from the American Association of Museums, saying on their web site "The goal of this DVD-ROM project was to offer unprecedented access to Cornell's work, giving users the "next best thing" to handling the works themselves - something clearly impossible in a museum. This intimate exploration also aims to give a unique insight into the artist's working materials and methods by extensive cross-referencing between finished works, source materials, artistic themes, essays and interviews." According to, the DVD-ROM contains a "compendium of the artist's works and source materials, the insights of numerous scholars and critics, access to Cornell's experimental films, and interactive opportunities that promote an utterly unprecedented investigation of his art. 231 illustrations, 205 in color." The Magical Worlds of Joseph Cornell accompanies a 272 page book titled Joseph Cornell: Shadowplay...Eterniday, ISBN: 0500976287, published by Thames & Hudson. The Magical Worlds of Joseph Cornell is only available with the book. (left: The Magical Worlds of Joseph Cornell cover image courtesy of the Voyager Foundation)

Museum Premieres CD-ROM. No other compilation of museums provides this valuable tool that enables access to the vast body of knowledge found in museums. Looking up artists by name or style, finding eras in history and seeking scientific information are just a few ways this powerful and unique feature is used find details of exciting exhibition and educational programs that are offered by museums nationwide in this extensive compilation. The Museum Premieres CD-ROM is published on Envoy ® software created by Novell ®.

National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution is a 1996 interactive CD-ROM program which presents a rich portrait of the art and artists who have captured the American cultural heritage in a variety of mediums over a period of 250 years -- from Colonial through to the 20th century. It covers a diverse range of genres from Early American Portrait Painting to Bottle Cap Folk Art. ISBN 1575950138

Photographers on Disc was developed by the International Museum of Photography at George Eastman House and includes a biographical dictionary of photographers, manufacturers and publishers, an index to American or Western European photographic exhibitions from 1839-1996; also includes a directory to museums and public collections throughout the United States, with bibliographic entries linked to each.


rev. 10/25/10


TFAO does not maintain a lending library of DVDs or CDs or sell them. The information presented on these pages does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation of any DVD or CD content or organization and is for reference only.

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