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Over 1,900 Oil Paintings from the National Library Join the Your Paintings Website

The Public Catalogue Foundation (PCF), in partnership with the BBC, today announced that all oil paintings from The National Library of Wales have been added to the Your Paintings website for the nation to enjoy. Your Paintings is a project to create a complete online catalogue of every oil painting in the national collection, whether on display or in store  

Paintings by artists such as Benjamin West, Claudia Williams, David Griffiths, Gwen John, and Turner are among the 1,900 paintings from The National Library of Wales that can now be seen on Your Paintings. The National Library of Wales collection joins 660 other paintings from the National Museum Cardiff and several National Trust properties across Wales that joined the site in 2011.

The collection at The National Library of Wales is focused around Welsh subject matter, Welsh portraits and Welsh artists. The importance of religious art to the nation is evident from the various portraits of leaders including those of John Elias, Christmas Evans and John Jones of Talysarn. There are also aesthetic and intellectual interests in the landscape by both native and visiting artists. The modern period is equally well represented, right up to the present century, with portraits of the famous footballer Ryan Giggs and the world champion boxer Joe Calzaghe. This rich and diverse collection provides a unique insight into the history and artistic heritage of Wales.

To help the BBC and PCF identify and catalogue what can be seen in each painting, the public is being invited to ‘tag’ the nation’s paintings. Tagging is fun, easy and you don’t need to be an art expert to do it. The results will allow future users of the Your Paintings website to find paintings of subjects that interest them. Your Paintings Tagger.
Andrew Green, Librarian, The National Library of Wales, said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with the PCF and the BBC to ensure that our wonderful collection of paintings is widely accessible. The oil paintings were the first collection to be published digitally by the Library and this new project brings a whole additional dimension to our aim of presenting Wales to the world.”

Nicholas Serota, Director, Tate, said: “The Your Paintings website is an important undertaking that will reveal the depth and breadth of the nation's collections of paintings, many of them published online for the first time. Through ambitious collaboration between organisations across the UK this bold project complements our ambition to connect audiences with art in an immediate way online, something we will take for granted in the future.”

Andrew Ellis, Director, the Public Catalogue Foundation, said: “No country has ever embarked on such a monumental project to showcase its entire painting collection online. Working with collections and individuals all over the UK, this project will reveal to the world the UK’sextraordinary holding of oil paintings.”

Roly Keating, Director of Archive Content, BBC, said: “Our partnership with the PCF encapsulates so many of the BBC's ambitions, both as a public service broadcaster and key supporter of the UK arts sector. Your Paintings will be a hugely valuable learning resource for our audience and demonstrates the power of working with partners to open up the nation's cultural resources.”

Notes to Editors

About Your Paintings
Your Paintings is a partnership project between the BBC and the Public Catalogue Foundation (PCF) to put the United Kingdom’s entire collection of oil paintings online at This website is emerging as a unique learning resource, showing not only photographs and information about each painting but also selected BBC TV archive footage and links to further information. The website was launched at the National Gallery in the summer of 2011. Currently, the site shows around 110,000 paintings from over 1,400 collections.


NLW paintings on the Your Picture website Your Pictures website Enquiries For the Public Catalogue Foundation and for press images contact Katie Carder on 020 7395 0338.NLW Press Office, Siôn Jobbins: 01970 632902