Visual Arts Data Service (VADS) at University for the Creative Arts


The Visual Arts Data Service (VADS) at the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) has released over 1300 newly researched records of old master paintings.

The 1,306 paintings, which come from four of the UK’s most important regional collections, have been made freely available online as part of the National Inventory of Continental European Paintings (‘NICE Paintings’).

The release is the result of the ‘NIRP of the North’ project, the latest phase of the National Inventory Research Project, an initiative from the University of Glasgow’s College of Arts which aims to help hard-pressed regional museums research and publicise their collections of pre-1900 Continental European oil paintings.

As part of ‘NIRP in the North’, international researchers from the UK, Italy and Poland worked on collections in the National Museums Liverpool, Manchester Art Gallery, Leeds Museums and Galleries and York Art Gallery, assisted by funding from the Kress Foundation, the John Ellerman Foundation and the Pilgrim Trust.

As a result of the research, all 1,306 works have now been described in detail and reassessed, with many of the paintings being re-attributed and subjects newly identified. Updated and detailed information on collectors, provenance, exhibition and publication history is also now freely available.
VADS provides online access to a growing collection of visual images contributed by universities, libraries, museums and archives from across the UK, which are available freely for non-commercial educational use. It’s been hosted online for twenty years by the University for the Creative Arts (UCA), a specialist university with over 160 years of experience in supporting and developing creative arts students.

To view the newly researched works, please visit

National Inventory of Continental European Paintings

 VADS Blog



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