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Publishing an online catalogue raisonné with Navigating.art

Discover how to turn your catalogue raisonné into a website using Navigating.art — no developer required. The built-in publishing feature lets you customize your digital catalogue raisonné’s appearance and content to fit your project’s needs.

Digital catalogues raisonnés have numerous advantages over paper publications: they are accessible, updatable, and cost-effective. When cataloging an artist's complete works, it can be challenging to determine when the research is truly complete. Online catalogues raisonnés have a decisive advantage here: they can be updated at any time as new works or information are discovered. Most importantly, the publication of the work doesn't have to wait until the research is entirely finished; you can publish as you research, bringing important information to the public as soon as possible. 

But what tools do you need to publish a digital catalogue raisonné? What processes offer the most efficiency and produce the highest quality work? Navigating.art offers a hassle-free solution. 

This guide includes instructions for using the Navigating.art platform to publish online catalogues raisonnés. If you have questions as you go, please send us a message. We’re here to help! 

Navigating.art’s built-in publishing feature

To make the design and publishing of a catalogue raisonné as easy as possible, Navigating.art provides a preconfigured website. The basic template for the website consists of modules, including a landing page, the catalogue with search function, archive, and an index section. Additional text pages can be added for essays and other requirements. This way, the website adapts to your specific requirements. 

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Customize your digital catalogue raisonné

Catalogues of works can vary greatly in scope and content. It is sometimes useful to group the individual works from a catalog into creative periods, subject areas, or by technique, or to provide additional information about the catalog raisonné. The publishing feature is configurable to the extent that each catalogue raisonné can be optimally presented.

You can choose from preformatted pages, which have been optimized to present different types of content. The configuration options include:

  • Define the order and names of menu items
  • Choose your own texts and illustrative images
  • Point out critical information such as disclaimers using text boxes
  • Highlight introductory essays about individual thematic groups, special features of the works, or periods that define the life and work of the artist
  • Optimize the search experience of your catalogue by selection from search filters.
  • Pre-sort works to your preference and select option for other sorting criteria
  • Integrated digitized publications into the bibliography and exhibition history
  • Provide more context through additional text pages, for example, for biography or chronology, terms and conditions, and privacy policy

Steps towards your online catalogue raisonné 

Publishing your digital catalogue raisonné with Navigating.art requires only a few steps.

  1. Let the Navigating.art team know that you want to publish your catalogue. If you want to preview the site before you publish, we will activate a temporary password protection that can be removed later.
  2. Configure your website by defining which menu items, filters, and content should be used. You'll receive an overview of the various options for all the configuration choices.
  3. Plan the launch of your website and inform the Navigating.art team in advance. You can decide when you are ready to publish your catalogue, and if you want Navigating.art to support the launch of your website with an announcement via a newsletter.

Launch checklist

  • Select website pages and configurations
  • Provide logo and favicon files
  • Register a new domain or subdomain for your existing website
  • Write introduction texts
  • Consider page meta descriptions and keywords for search engine optimization (SEO)
  • Publish finalized artwork entries

Maintaining your online catalogue raisonné 

With Navigating.art, updating your catalogs of works is effortless. Whenever new sources are found or additional information is gathered, you can update your catalogue on the internal platform. Recording all the relevant information about the works in your catalog and revising them can be done at any time with just a few clicks. When you're ready, publishing the revised data takes just one mouse click, ensuring that the website always displays the most current information.

Not only can you adjust the information in your catalog of works, but you can also revise all other areas of the website. Simply update the texts and configuration options in our website configuration overview, and the Navigating.art team will take care of implementing the corresponding revisions on the website.


If you would like to learn more about the Navigating.art platform and website, contact us or book a demo.

Last updated: August 1, 2023