If you have never explored the digital collections of Austin’s museums, galleries, archives and cultural centers, the time to do so is now.


The city’s residents are sheltering in place. Those venues mentioned above closed because of the coronavirus pandemic. You can finally scratch the surface of the tens of millions of astonishing objects — 50 million at the Texas Archaeological Research Laboratory in North Austin alone — physically held in these collections.


"While only a fraction of what is in the Ransom Center’s collection is digitized, we have thousands of manuscripts, artworks, photographs and books online," Elizabeth Page, head of communications and marketing for the University of Texas humanities treasure trove, told the American-Statesman recently, "and we are sharing those on our social media channels, along with a call to creative action as we ask our followers to get inspired and share their own creative undertaking."


This week, we’ll briefly introduce pieces from six digital collections, and we’ll follow up with others in the coming weeks. See this week’s images in the slideshow above. For more, check out the websites of the featured cultural centers:


hrc.utexas.edu/collections


collection.blantonmuseum.org


mexicartemuseum.pastperfectonline.com


umlaufsculpture.org/sculptures


library.austintexas.gov/ahc/about-us


davisgalleryaustin.com/artists