Art UK

A robust platform for an international audience

Art UK is a joint initiative between the Public Catalogue Foundation (PCF), over 3,000 museums and other art collections, and the BBC, to photograph, index and make the UK’s art available online.

Application-level profiling of customised software

When the Your Paintings project, developed and hosted by the BBC, transitioned into the more technically sophisticated Art UK, EveryCity was brought in as a dedicated hosting specialist with cloud expertise.

The Art UK programme comprises a database of 212,727 artworks, 3,258 venues and 38,322 artists. As well as the website for public use worldwide, there is also a series of portals for the 3,000 or so partners involved to upload content and manage the information about venues in which their content is exhibited.

What we’re dealing with here is not just standard tools out the box, but discrete and individual implementations that had to be managed. And it was also necessary for the hosting company to play a central role in bringing everything together technically, from multiple stakeholders.Adrian Cooper, Director, consultancy, Intelligent Heritage

Working with a large and complex ecosystem, and three key stakeholders involved in the technology transition, Art UK not only needed a hosting provider that could go above and beyond in terms of the system’s uptime 24/7, but could diplomatically work with the technology providers, troubleshooting and profiling all the way up to the application layer.

Everycity was able to identify bottlenecks and advise on solutions, without which the site would not have been able to launch successfully, or on time, at a large-scale event at the House of Commons.

The launch at the House of Commons represents the importance the Government places on making heritage and art available to everyone. Speaking at the event, the Hon Ed Vaizey, Minister of State, Department of Culture, Media and Sport, said: “Art UK is a fantastic example of using innovation and technology to make art accessible to all.”

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