The Wildenstein Plattner Institute, Inc. is a non-profit, private foundation dedicated to the compilation of digital catalogues raisonnés and archives that support research in the field of art history.
The WPI was co-founded in the United States in 2016 by Guy Wildenstein, president of Wildenstein & Company, and the Hasso Plattner Foundation, the eponymous German non-profit organization of a leading entrepreneur in digital technology. Central to our mission is the production of an online database of catalogues raisonnés, made possible in part by the gift of all of the art historical archives and scholarly documents compiled by the Wildenstein Institute, including the rights to the catalogues raisonnés and critical catalogues published under its imprint. As an entirely distinct organization, the WPI is not the author of the Wildenstein Institute materials and makes no representation or warranty with respect to their content. These historic archives are maintained by the Fonds WPI in France and are currently being digitized for our use in the United States.
A fundamental component of the WPI’s own research and publication initiatives is a state-of-the-art, digital cataloguing and archiving platform, developed in consultation with a tech team in Germany. The WPI’s online catalogues raisonnés are designed to link to digitized archival resources from our own holdings and from those of other institutions that make their data available on the Semantic Web. Unlike static print catalogues, our digital publications will be continually updated and revised by the staff of the WPI according to strict standards and guidelines. Our goal is to make these forthcoming digital publications a dynamic and user-friendly resource for inquiry and future research. For more information on our technology, please click here.
While the WPI is committed to revising and supporting select catalogues raisonnés initiated by our benefactor, we are also working to expand and diversify the roster of artists under our study. We actively consult with specialists in the fields of the digital humanities, library science, information technology and art history, and we rely on the expertise of scholars and art world professionals who serve on our catalogue raisonné vetting committees. Through these wide-ranging partnerships, the WPI hopes to make the study of art history relevant to the digital generation.
Statement on Critical Cataloguing at the WPI
The WPI’s publications and archival collections have research value and are a product of the historical time period in which they were produced. Our legacy collections may contain language and imagery that are offensive because of content relating to race, ability, gender, religion, or sexuality/sexual orientation. The documents, images, publications, and other materials are presented in their original state and context, and do not necessarily reflect the values of the WPI. To learn more about the WPI’s efforts to mitigate the effect of potentially harmful images and language, read the WPI Digital Archives Statement on Potentially Harmful Language and Content in Cataloguing and Archival Description.
The WPI strives to make all of our contents and materials available to all visitors. Whenever possible, textual materials such as books, periodicals and sales catalogues use optical character recognition (known as OCR) to make them searchable and accessible to screen readers. Auditory materials, including oral histories and recordings of lectures are published with closed captioning or links to transcriptions. Visual materials, such as reproduction of artworks are often provided with basic descriptions of their content. If there are additional ways we can support access to materials, please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Munsee Lenape Land Acknowledgement Statement
The WPI, Inc. acknowledges that its New York headquarters is located on the unceded land of the Munsee Lenape. As occupants of the island of Manaháhtaan in Lenapehoking, we pay respect to Indigenous people throughout the Lenape diaspora—past, present, and future—and invite our visitors to learn about the rich history of the Munsee Lenape and legacies of settler colonialism in New York as well as support The Lenape Center.