YDC2 at West Campus Imaging Lab

Yale University is expanding access to its vast collections through digital technologies. As part of the effort to bring Yale’s cultural heritage and natural science collections online, the University is developing the YDC2 Imaging Lab; a state-of-the-art shared digital and scientific imaging laboratory to extend capacity in digital photography and introduce innovative scientific imaging methods. In addition to the creation of a shared state-of-the art facility, the YDC2 Imaging Lab is designed to bring together researchers, educators, curators, archivists and digital professionals to strengthen Yale’s ability to process and understand its renowned collections and make them available worldwide.

Photo of West CampusLocated on Yale’s West Campus, the YDC2 Imaging Lab will work in conjunction with the Center for Conservation and Preservation. Together, they will support researchers, staff, students and the newly established Yale Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage. The renovation, funded in combination by the University and the generous gift from Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin, is strategically designed to make use of existing laboratory and office spaces and will be completed over a multiple years.  The first phase renovations have focused on improving the physical spaces utilized by the YDC2 Imaging Lab and the Center for Conservation and Preservation Research Labs.

Imaging Lab Floorplan

Construction kicked off in September 2012 and was completed in early 2013.

The designated space for the first phase of the Imaging Lab consists of 5,528 square feet in the south end of the Collections Study Center (Building 900) on Yale’s West Campus. With a large open floor plan and 22' high ceilings, the space offers unprecedented capacity and flexibility for imaging art and specimens.  The large, high bay studio can also be divided into two studios with a 30’ x 17’ folding door.  A catwalk suspended 15' above Studio 2 allows for large flat object photography.  New equipment acquisitions in the YDC2 Imaging Lab are focused on adding capacity for the 2D capture of oversized artworks and natural history specimens, as well as the introduction of new analytical imaging capabilities for objects of various sizes.  The Lab includes a dedicated scientific imaging room for 3D, multispectral imaging, and reflectance transformation imaging for both research and production.

View Lab Floorplan

Construction of the YDC2 Imaging Lab is a significant move toward the long-term vision of opening up Yale’s collections and information about those collections to the world. The YDC2 is leading this broad community collaboration to create a shared infrastructure for the organizations engaged in the stewardship and study of cultural heritage and natural history at Yale – Yale Peabody Museum, the Yale Center for British Art, the Yale University Art Gallery, Computing and the Arts, and the Arts Area Professional Schools.

Stay tuned for more updates on the construction of this dynamic new facility by subscribing to the YDC2 Imaging Lab blog and following on Twitter @YaleYDC2