What are agents?

Agents belong to the main components of the art events used in the Navigating.art platform. This article explains what they are and how to use them.

Agents are  used in all contexts of the Navigating.art platform. They describe any type of involved person or corporate body. Linking the agent entry to the art events defines the agent’s specific role. Hence an agent can take different roles, e.g., an author of an article, an exhibitor of a venue, or a receiver in a provenance event.

In the Navigating.art platform four types of agents are available: 

  1. Person: a single person such as a collector, author, or publisher
  2. Family: a pair or group of people belonging to the same family functioning as a single agent such as a family of collectors
  3. Corporate Body: an organization or group of persons that is identified by a particular name such as institutions like museums, galleries, or publishing companies
  4. Unknown: choose this option if you have no information about the agent’s nature

In addition to the agent’s type, you can capture more information, e.g., detailed descriptions about the agent and additional names. You can also add several addresses, e.g., if a corporate body has two registered offices in different cities. This allows you to select from the captured names and addresses while linking the agent to an art event.
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Since agents are the main components of art events, it is useful to create the corresponding agent entries before creating the art events.

When creating the agent you can make use of the integrated Getty Union List of Artist Names (ULAN) and the “Gemeinsame Normdatei” (GND). This way the data is imported to the Navigating.art platform from the Getty ULAN. A link to the Getty ULAN entry will be visible in the agent’s entry on the Navigating.art platform. The GND is not yet integrated in the platform but links to the corresponding GND-entry can be captured in the agent’s notes. 

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