CRSA recently sat down with Dieter and Lilian Noack to talk about their monumental 14 year effort, the Daumier-Register, an ongoing digital catalogue of the works of Honoré Daumier. The site launched in 2001, giving it the distinction of being one of the first and longest running digital catalogues of one artist’s work in the field. Over the course of our interview, we learned many ways their project relates to and departs from the traditional (printed) catalogue raisonné format:
Artist: Honoré Daumier (1808 – 1879)
Organized by / Staff: Dieter and Lilian Noack
Publication format: Digital, accessible via http://www.daumier-register.org and http://www.daumier.org
Scope: 4000 lithographs, 1000 wood engravings, 550 oil paintings and 100 sculptures
Forthcoming content: 1,500 drawings
Database: Microsoft Access
Prior publications: The Daumier-Register builds upon a fairly long list of catalogues on the artist, dating back to 1888, including those by:
Arsène Alexandre (Paris, H. Laurens, 1888)
Erich Klossowski (München, R. Piper 1908 and München, R. Piper, 1923)
Eduard Fuchs (München, A. Langen, 1930)
Jean Adhémar’s (New York, Macmillan, 1954)
K.E. Maison (v. 1 London, Thames and Hudson, 1967-68,v.2 London Thames and Hudson New York, NY Graphic Society 1968)
Gabriele Mandel, Luigi Barzini and Pierre Georgel (Milano, Rizzoli 1971, and Paris, Flammarion 1972)
Primary resources: A primary resource for the Daumier-Register is the 1968 CR by K.E. Maison, but they have built on this by contacting museums and archives, and reviewing exhibition and auction catalogues from the 1860 onward with the help of the Watson Library and Frick Library.
Updates: While their database is updated regularly as research develops, the site undergoes a major update once or twice per year. Minor changes occur on an ongoing basis.
Digital-only benefits: The site includes three language options (English, French, and German), multimedia content, and more than 700 “themes” related to the artist and his practice so that scholars can identify, for example, all works that include or relate to “lawyers” or “bookdealers,” or combine up to four themes in a search.