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Public Collections

This guide provides an overview of the Public Collections that are freely available in Artstor and Shared Shelf Commons

Where do these collections come from?

All of the images, documents, audio, and video files in the collections linked to in this guide come from Shared Shelf Commons ( Institutions contribute collections to the Commons by publishing from JSTOR Forum - the web-based software used to manage, describe, and deliver their digital collections.

This guide is not comprehensive because new content is being published all the time, but it seeks to capture the breadth and depth of the Commons. We're always adding newly published material to this LibGuide, so if you notice a collection that hasn't been added yet, let us know by writing to! 

How can I use this content?

All of these collections have been made available by the institutions that manage them in order to allow broader access. All of the images can be viewed and downloaded without restrictions, but you should consult the rights data in each record to see if and how an image can be reused.

How can I get my digital collections included?

  • If you subscribe to JSTOR Forum, you can see our support site articles on publishing and sharing content or contact your Implementation Manager by writing to to learn more.
  • If you publish to Shared Shelf Commons and would like your content to be included in this guide, please contact We'd love to add your collection!
  • Interested in subscribing to JSTOR Forum? Contact us to set up a free trial or write to 

About Shared Shelf Commons

Shared Shelf Commons is a freely accessible library of images and other media. Search and browse collections with tools to zoom, print, export, and share media. Institutions that subscribe to JSTOR Forum (formerly called "Shared Shelf"), a Web-based service for cataloging and managing digital collections, can share their Public Collections via the Commons.

All of the content in the Commons is also made available as a Public Collection in Artstor, where it is discoverable alongside Institutional Collections, Personal Collections, and the 2 million images in the Artstor Digital Library. 

About JSTOR Forum

JSTOR Forum is the new name for Shared Shelf and is the next generation of the web-based software for managing, describing, and delivering your library and museum collections to maximize their discoverability and usage.