For some years work at the Getty Research Institute’s Vocabulary Program has included the development of Linked Open Datasets. Yesterday the first of the four vocabularies to appear as LOD: Art & Architecture Thesaurus (AAT)®, was announced by James Cuno on the Getty Iris. The data set is available for download at under an Open Data Commons Attribution License (ODC BY 1.0). Cuno writes:

The Art & Architecture Thesaurus is a reference of over 250,000 terms on art and architectural history, styles, and techniques. It’s one of the Getty Research Institute’s four Getty Vocabularies, a collection of databases that serves as the premier resource for cultural heritage terms, artists’ names, and geographical information, reflecting over 30 years of collaborative scholarship. The other three Getty Vocabularies will be released as Linked Open Data over the coming 18 months.

The availability of the Getty Vocabularies in this form is a real step forward for developers of content in the digital humanities, and we all look forward to the remaining Vocabularies’ release as LOD as well. These include:

Mona Lisa or La Gioconda? CONA, a new vocabulary now accepting contributions, includes titles, attributions, and other information for art and architecture.
London or Londinium? TGN is a structured vocabulary, including names, descriptions, and other information for places important to art and architecture.
Titian or Tiziano Vecellio? ULAN is a structured vocabulary, including names, biographies, and other information about artists and architects.

Late last year the Getty launched the Open Content Program, which makes thousands of images of works of art available for download, and the Virtual Library, offering free online access to hundreds of Getty Publications backlist titles .