Because this site is all about art, I must use images of artwork in order to comment upon and teach these works of art. I’m including this page to explain my policies regarding image use.
Most artwork in art history falls within the public domain. Artwork produced before 1923 falls within the public domain in the USA where I live, so I use those images freely.
Photographs of Architecture and Sculpture
For photographs of architecture and sculpture, I look for images that have a Creative Commons license when possible or I get permission from the photographer. For images with a Creative Commons license, I release those images with the same license that allowed me to use them.
Additionally, many museums allow their photographs of architecture and sculpture to be used for education purposes like the Met Museum, the Walters Art Museum, and the British Museum.
I can’t teach about Modern or Contemporary Art without using images. I believe my site qualifies for Fair Use according to the following rationale.
Section 107 of the US Copyright Law says that it is fair to reproduce a particular work if it is for the purposes of criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. My lessons that I create for artwork fall into several of these categories–criticism, comment, teaching, scholarship, and research.
The purpose of Art Class Curator is to be an educational website helping parents and teachers better understand and teach art. I want to inspire everyone to engage with art and make it a part of their lives. The images on my site are not used for decoration. They are a vital component to my lessons.
Section 107 also mentions four factors to determine fair use. Here is a list of the four factors as well as how these apply to Art Class Curator.
- The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes — This site does take in a very small amount of money through ads and affiliate sales, but not enough to cover the costs of writing and hosting the site. I do have a couple products for sale, but no copyrighted artworks will be included in any product I produce for sale without receiving proper licenses for the images.
- The nature of the copyrighted work — These artworks are images. There is no other way to show them or teach about them without being able to look at them.
- The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole — As a courtesy to the artist, when I discuss an artwork on the site that is protected by copyright, I include a low quality and small thumbnail of the artwork instead of a full quality and larger image. I don’t believe I have to do this because of Fair Use, but I do not want there to be any confusion. I also include a link to the museum or gallery where the artwork is held.
- The effect of the use upon the potential market for, or value of, the copyrighted work — Teaching about artworks only improves their value. There is no competition between my website and an artist’s work. It is a mutually beneficial arrangement.
Thank you. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact me.