Commons:10,000 paintings from Directmedia
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Directmedia is the publisher that releases the German Wikipedia CD/DVD. There is a good and productive relationship between Wikipedians and Directmedia.
Directmedia has provided 10,000 paintings from the Yorck Project DVD "10.000 Meisterwerke der Malerei" (10,000 Masterpieces of Painting) and the associated metadata to the Wikimedia Commons community. These files are now available at Category:The Yorck Project and in their respective specific topic and artist categories. See the original announcement below.
Vlado (Erwin Jurschitza) is the executive director of Directmedia and also of The Yorck Project. On Monday, April 25, 2005, he posted a mail to the German Wikipedia mailing list.
A translation of the German message into English follows:
Hi! To expand the portfolio of pictures in Wikipedia Commons and to make the language Wikipedias even more attractive, Directmedia plans to make available the pictures and the database of the DVD-Rom "10.000 Meisterwerke der Malerei"  (10,000 Masterpieces of Painting) for upload. This consists of 10,000 scans from public domain paintings (all of the artists are dead for more than 70 years). The database includes for each painting the filename, the artist (with personal data like date/place of birth/death), the German caption, the date of origin, the measurements, the painting technique, the place of exhibition and a rough stylistic classification (e.g. "Baroque"). The pictures are high resolution JPG files with an average height/width of 1,800 pixels. Both tables (artists and paintings) are tab delimited files.
The Wikipedia-DVD Herbst 2005 (next German Wikipedia DVD release in autumn 2005) should benefit by this richer illustration. At many of the 1600 listed artists on DVD pictures can be added (there should be a cross check which artist is already listed in commons or not). On the other hand, the pictures with linked categories from commons  should be added to the next DVD.
Speaking about licensing, Directmedia will acquire the rights on the database from the producer "The Yorck Project Gesellschaft für Bildarchivierung GmbH" (German law: UrhG § 87) and release them as GFDL. If this isn't possible with licensing rights, there should be another corresponding construct.
The building of a small community "task force" which will make the transfer technically efficient and smooth is a pre-condition. Besides the raw data, Directmedia can't contribute more work because of a lack of capacity.
If anyone finds this offer interesting, someone should start a project page and coordinate the work in Commons-l.
Directmedia Publishing GmbH