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Digitisation and cataloging of the Frobenius Institute's Pictorial Archive

Head of project: Prof Karl-Heinz Kohl, Director of the Frobenius Institute;
Staff: Matthias Debald, M.A., Dr Britta Duelke, Gabriele Franke, M.A., Dr Richard Kuba, Dirk Lang, M.A., and Dr Gabriele Weisser.

The two objectives of the digitisation project are 1) to arrange, describe, preserve and store appropriately one of the largest ethnographic art archives of the Frobenius Institute, and 2) to make the archive more accessible to scholarly research by creating a database, an online catalogue and creating aids with links and references to other collections and materials held by the Institute.

Work on the project commenced in July 2006. It involves various separate sequential and at the same time continuing and interconnected operations:

  • compiliation of the collections' background histories and identifying the origins of materials (establishment of provenance); taking an inventory of the existing materials; identification of structures and contents; establishment of authenticity; removal of inappropriate material
  • conversion of materials into digital formats: the scanning of smaller materials was completed by the end of 2007; larger materials are being converted in the Institute's photographic section;
  • creation and development of suitable thesauri;
  • creation of catalogue records;
  • physical (re-)arrangement of materials, arrangements for restoration where necessary, deaccession of inappropriate materials;
  • repacking of materials into appropriate boxes and folders, re-housing and adequate storage of materials;
  • creation of a database and online catalogue.

Technical Proceedings

Sorry, the English text is not yet available, for details please see the German website.


Duelke, Britta (2007): Copies of Rock Art - From Early Interests to Current Use: The Frobenius Institute's Rock Art Collection: a brief account.
Report on the project "Patine du Désert. Re-création de la patine de grès sahariens, porteurs d'oeuvres gravées ou peintes, témoins de 15.000 ans de changements climatiques." PACT (Bordeaux), Réseaux européens: Sciences et Patrimoine Culturel, pp. 11.