Wikipedia:GLAM/Khalili

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Video made by John Lubbock for Wikimedia UK

The Khalili Foundation is partnering with Wikimedia UK to share a unique set of cultural content on and to promote cultural diversity on Wikimedia platforms. The partnership was announced at Wikimania 2019 in Stockholm.

The Khalili Foundation is a UK-based charity promoting interfaith and intercultural understanding through art, culture and education. As part of its cultural philanthropy, it freely shares images and data from the Khalili Collections. The Khalili Collections are eight collections of cultural treasures acquired by Professor Sir David Khalili -each the largest and most comprehensive of its kind. They include:

The first Featured Picture to come out of the partnership (Mention in Signpost)

The partnership involves:

  • Sharing more than 1,500 high-resolution images of items from across the eight collections;
  • Sharing short lay summaries of research by academic experts that relates to the collections.

User:MartinPoulter is acting as a Wikimedian In Residence for the project from February 2020 onwards.

This is a highly significant partnership in a number of ways. It is globally the first GLAM-Wiki project with a private collection. The collections are mostly about art outside the European/ North American canons. The collected artworks are often the best technical and artistic examples of their era, and they have been digitised with high resolution. There are more than seventy volumes published about the collection, by leading academic experts, that give contextual essays as well as documenting the art works. This information is being used to improve overview articles such as Edo period, Meiji era, Damascening, Japanese lacquerware, and to create artist biographies. At the outset of the project, Japanese decorative arts were poorly represented on English Wikipedia, with some outstanding artists having no biography, and no mention or art and culture in the Meiji era article. Wikimedia also suffered from a paucity of images related to Islam, compared to other major religions.

Progress reports[edit]

This Month in GLAM[edit]

Blog posts[edit]

Case study[edit]

Key metrics[edit]

New articles created[edit]

  1. Khalili Collections (DYK 26 October 2019)
  2. Khalili Collection of Kimono (DYK 18 April 2020)
  3. Plácido Zuloaga (DYK 18 June 2020) (Passed Good Article review 18 March 2021)
  4. Khalili Collection of Japanese Art (DYK 28 May 2020) (Passed Good Article review 22 October 2020)
  5. List of collections of Japanese art
  6. Khalili Imperial Garniture (DYK 12 July 2020) (Passed Good Article review 15 July 2021)
  7. Yabu Meizan (DYK 9 June 2020)
  8. Khalili Collection of Swedish Textiles (DYK 31 August 2020)
  9. Khalili Collection of Spanish Metalwork (DYK 15 October 2020)
  10. A volunteer has translated the entire Yabu Meizan article into Vietnamese, creating the first Vietnamese Wikipedia page with a Khalili Collections image.
  11. A volunteer has translated the lead of the Khalili Collection of Swedish Textiles article into Persian.
  12. A different volunteer translated the lead of the Khalili Collection of Japanese Art article into Persian.
  13. Khalili Collection of Enamels of the World (DYK 10 November 2020) (Passed Good Article review 27 June 2021)
  14. A volunteer translated the full Plácido Zuloaga article into French.
  15. A volunteer translated the full Khalili Collection of Japanese Art article into Malay.
  16. Khalili Collection of Aramaic Documents (DYK 12 January 2021) (Passed Good Article review 10 September 2021)
  17. A volunteer translated the Khalili Collection of Aramaic Documents article into Persian.
  18. A volunteer translated a few paragraphs of Khalili Collection of Aramaic Documents into French.
  19. A volunteer translated the Khalili Collection of Kimono article into Persian.
  20. A volunteer translated a summary of the Khalili Collection of Spanish Metalwork article into Persian.
  21. A volunteer translated a summary of the Khalili Collection of Enamels of the World article into Persian.
  22. Khalili Collection of Hajj and the Arts of Pilgrimage (DYK 16 March 2021) (Passed Good Article review 4 September 2021)
  23. A volunteer translated a summary of the Khalili Collection of Hajj and the Arts of Pilgrimage article into Arabic.
  24. Sitara (textile) (DYK 29 April 2021)
  25. Mahmal (DYK 28 May 2021)
  26. Khalili Collection of Islamic Art (DYK 3 June 2021)
  27. Anis Al-Hujjaj (DYK 1 July 2021)
  28. A volunteer translated most of the Anis Al-Hujjaj article into Persian.
  29. A volunteer translated the entire Sitara (textile) article into Arabic.
  30. Muhammad Sadiq (photographer) (DYK 15 September 2021)
  31. A volunteer translated the whole Khalili Collection of Islamic Art article into Italian.
  32. A volunteer translated the Muhammad Sadiq (photographer) article into Arabic.
  33. Dar al-Kiswa (DYK 17 March 2022) (passed Good Article review 18 June 2022)
  34. A volunteer translated the Dar al-Kiswa article into Persian.
  35. Hajj: Journey to the Heart of Islam (DYK 31 December 2022) (passed Featured Article review 4 April 2023) (mention in Signpost) (Today's Featured Article 17 May 2023)
  36. Musa va 'Uj (DYK 25 April 2023) (passed Good Article review 22 December 2023)
  37. A volunteer translated the Hajj: Journey to the Heart of Islam article into Indonesian.
  38. A volunteer translated the Sitara (textile) article into Indonesian.
  39. A volunteer translated the Mahmal article into Indonesian.
  40. A volunteer translated the Anis Al-Hujjaj article into Indonesian.
  41. A volunteer translated a summary of the Hajj: Journey to the Heart of Islam article into Malay.
  42. A volunteer translated the Hajj: Journey to the Heart of Islam article into Urdu. This has subsequently been given Urdu Wikipedia's Featured Article award.
  43. A volunteer translated the Muhammad Sadiq (photographer) article into Indonesian.
  44. A volunteer translated a summary of the Muhammad Sadiq (photographer) article into Malay.
  45. A volunteer translated the Khalili Collection of Hajj and the Arts of Pilgrimage article into Indonesian.
  46. A volunteer translated the Musa va 'Uj article into Spanish
  47. A volunteer translated a summary of the Anis Al-Hujjaj article into Urdu.
  48. A volunteer translated a summary of the Muhammad Sadiq (photographer) article into Urdu.
  49. Gulshan-i 'Ishq (DYK 19 November 2023)
  50. Empire of the Sultans (DYK 18 January 2024) (now a Featured Article Candidate)
  51. A volunteer translated the Sitara (textile) article into Uzbek.
  52. A volunteer translated the whole Khalili Collection of Islamic Art article into Indonesian
  53. A volunteer translated the whole Empire of the Sultans article into Indonesian
  54. A volunteer translated the greatly-expanded Falnama article, including the material about the Khalili Falnama, into Persian

New articles created at editathons[edit]

Other articles substantially improved[edit]

  1. List of museums of Islamic art (threefold expansion)
  2. Meiji era (added sections on Art and Fashion)
  3. Edo period (added section on Fashion)
  4. Damascening (added section on Eibar, Spain)
  5. Shibata Zeshin
  6. Makuzu Kōzan
  7. Japanese lacquerware
  8. Imperial Household Artist (fivefold expansion)
  9. Japanese pottery and porcelain#Meiji era
  10. Japanese_art#Art_of_the_Prewar_period
  11. Namikawa Sōsuke (tenfold expansion from stub to B class - DYK 25 July 2020)
  12. Namikawa Yasuyuki (fivefold expansion - DYK 25 July 2020)
  13. Kawade Shibatarō (fivefold expansion - DYK 7 August 2020)
  14. Japonisme#Decorative_arts
  15. Swedish carpets and rugs (more than doubled in size)
  16. Vitreous enamel (added sections on Japan and on Islamic countries)
  17. Dala'il al-Khayrat (Added section on manuscripts)
  18. A volunteer has translated the article section on art of the Meiji era into Ukranian.
  19. Kiswah (added section on Textiles of the Kaaba)
  20. Islamic embroidery (added section on Textiles of sacred sites)
  21. History of the Hajj (added subsections and re-wrote lead)
  22. Talismanic shirt (expanded by about 50%)
  23. The Talismanic shirt article was translated into Persian, including the content added by this project.
  24. The Kiswah article was translated into Portuguese including the content added by this project.
  25. UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity‎ (sixfold expansion - DYK 5 June 2022)
  26. The Talismanic shirt article was translated into Turkish, including the content added by this project.
  27. The additions to the Talismanic shirt article were also translated into German.
  28. World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development (fivefold expansion)
  29. Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions (adding content/ rewriting for readability)
  30. Cultural diversity (almost entirely rewritten) (open peer review completed 6 January 2024)
  31. Falnama (eleven times expansion, from Stub class to B class) (DYK 13 October 2023)
  32. Bibliomancy (added a section on Islam using text from the Falnama article)
  33. The Talismanic shirt article has been partially translated into Indonesian and into Malay, including an image shared from the Khalili Collections.

Many more articles — too many to list here — have been improved with images and/or additional facts and citations. As of January 2023, the BaGLAMa tool reports that more than 300 pages on English Wikipedia have Khalili Collections images.

Global Visual Arts Taskforce[edit]

As part of this project, I have created this list of target articles, based on the Ahmed and Poulter research paper. You are invited to improve Wikipedia's cultural diversity by creating or improving articles about the artists and masterpieces on the list.

Images uploaded[edit]

I've created the dedicated account User:MartinPoulter (KC WIR) for uploads from March 2021 onwards. That account will be used for image uploads only, not for any article editing.

1,541 (Images uploaded as part of this effort usually have "Khalili Collection" as the first part of the filename).

These categories are expanding slightly over time, usually with cropped versions of already-uploaded images.

These images are categorised into over a thousand Commons categories so far (excluding hidden categories).

Image views[edit]

  • 49.2 million image views total in 2021, including images on the front page for DYK.
  • 47 million image views total in 2022
  • The category has been added to the BaGLAMa2 stats tool. Stats for January 2020 show zero hits, but that is an error with the stats tool. The tool seems to have stopped calculating stats in January 2023 but page view statistics can still be calculated by GLAMorgan.
    • January 2023: 4,794,240 (missing data for 595 pages) (GLAMorgan gives a much higher number than BaGLAMa2)
    • February 2023: 4,284,016 (missing data for 635 pages)
    • March 2023: 5,276,872 (missing data for 687 pages)
    • April 2023: 5,123,063 (missing data for 546 pages) (excluding 4.8 million image views from the Musa va 'Uj DYK)
    • May 2023: 5,471,972 (missing data for 686 pages) (excluding 4.7 million image views from Today's Featured Article on English Wikipedia, May 17)
    • June 2023: 4,709,833 (missing data for 662 pages)
    • July 2023: 4,699,823 (missing data for 572 pages)
    • August 2023: 4,520,153 (missing data for 700 pages)
    • September 2023: 4,840,296 (missing data for 531 pages)
    • October 2023: 4,920,186 (missing data for 541 pages) (excluding 4.6 million image views from the Falnama DYK)
    • November 2023: 5,584,000 (excluding 4.8 million views from the Gulshan-i 'Ishq DYK on English Wikipedia, 70,489 views from the war mask Picture Of The Day on Arabic Wikipedia, 29 November, and 65,080 views from the Picture of the Day on Persian Wikipedia, 2 December)
    • December 2023: 5,161,982 (missing data for 543 pages) (excluding the Picture Of The Day on Persian Wikipedia, 14 December)
    • Total for 2023: 78.5 million image views
    • January 2024: 5,958,489 on 92 wikis
    • February 2024: 7,154,543 (missing data for 636 pages) on 93 wikis
    • March 2024: 6,126,483 on 94 wikis

The BaGLAMa stats tool is overestimating the image views for some months. Corrected numbers are below. These numbers do not include image hits on the front page, for example when an image is used in a DYK.

Month Views
May 2021 1,886,107
April 2022 About 2.5 million; hard to determine

Wikidata items[edit]

So far 1,188 items created for objects in the Khalili Collections (not including the items for the collections themselves). Total 11,423 statements (mean 9.6 statements per object)

The number of Wikidata items does not match the number of images because there are often multiple images of the same object, and some items lack images because they are too recent for the original object to be out of copyright.

Featured images[edit]

Featured images on English Wikipedia
Featured images on Commons
Featured images on Persian Wikipedia
Featured images on Arabic Wikipedia
Featured images on Indonesian Wikipedia

PetScan query which finds other featured images (16 results as of 1 February 2024)

A Composite Imaginary View of Japan was the picture of the day on French Wikipedia for 29 May 2021, where it was shown to more than half a million people. This was also Commons Picture of the Day on 11 July 2021, which also made it Picture of the Day on 26 versions of Wikipedia and on Spanish Wikinews. Pages with the image were seen by around 900,000 people in total.

Featured Articles[edit]

17 May 2023
A hajj certificate showing the Kaaba within the Masjid al-Haram
A hajj certificate showing the Kaaba within the Masjid al-Haram

Hajj: Journey to the Heart of Islam was an exhibition held at the British Museum in London from 26 January to 15 April 2012. It was the world's first major exhibition telling the story, visually and textually, of the hajj: the pilgrimage to Mecca which is one of the five pillars of Islam. Textiles, manuscripts, historical documents, photographs, and art works from many different countries and eras were displayed to illustrate the themes of travel to Mecca, hajj rituals, and the Kaaba (depicted). The exhibition was formally opened by the then Prince Charles and was popular both with Muslims and non-Muslims, attracting nearly 120,000 adult visitors and favourable press reviews. An exhibition catalogue with essays about the hajj was published by the British Museum in 2012, along with a shorter illustrated guide to the hajj. An academic conference, linked to the exhibition, resulted in another book about the topic. (Full article...)

Recently featured:

Did You Know?[edit]

These statements, images and links have appeared on English Wikipedia's front page where they were each seen by millions of people.

Did You Know... Image Date
that the Khalili Collections (manuscript folio shown) comprise some 35,000 works of art assembled by Nasser D. Khalili over five decades?
Manuscript folio of Shahnameh
Manuscript folio of Shahnameh
26 October 2019
that a collection of kimono (example pictured) assembled by Nasser Khalili covers four periods of Japanese history?
Kimono from the Khalili Collection
Kimono from the Khalili Collection
18 April 2020
that Nasser Khalili's 1,400-piece collection of Meiji-era Japanese art (object pictured) is equalled only by the Japanese imperial collection in size and quality?
Japanese incense burner in the Khalili Collection
Japanese incense burner in the Khalili Collection
28 May 2020
that Yabu Meizan's success as a porcelain artist (work pictured) inspired a rival workshop to sell imitations under his name?
Painted and gilded bowl by Yabu Meizan, c. 1910
Painted and gilded bowl by Yabu Meizan, c. 1910
09 June 2020
that Plácido Zuloaga trained more than two hundred artists to make damascened artworks (example pictured)?
Fonthill Casket, from the Khalili Collection of Spanish metalwork
Fonthill Casket, from the Khalili Collection of Spanish metalwork
18 June 2020
that on their display in Chicago in 1893, the vases of the Khalili Imperial Garniture (pictured) were described as "the largest examples of cloisonné enamel ever made"?
Khalili Imperial Garniture
Khalili Imperial Garniture
12 July 2020
that Namikawa Sōsuke (work pictured) and Namikawa Yasuyuki were the only two cloisonné artists to be appointed Imperial Household Artists?
Vases by Namikawa Sōsuke
Vases by Namikawa Sōsuke
25 July 2020
that Kawade Shibatarō co-developed the moriage ('piling-up') technique, which gives enamel artworks a three-dimensional effect? - 07 August 2020
that Nasser Khalili assembled the Khalili Collection of Swedish Textiles (item pictured) because he felt that art historians undervalued works by anonymous creators?
Swedish tapestry from the Khalili Collection
Swedish tapestry from the Khalili Collection
31 August 2020
that the Khalili Collection of Spanish Metalwork includes a Moroccan-style dagger (pictured) previously owned by King Alfonso XII of Spain?
Dagger and sheath from the Khalili Collection
Dagger and sheath from the Khalili Collection
15 October 2020
that the Khalili Collection of Enamels of the World includes a throne table made for the 18th-century Qianlong Emperor? - 10 November 2020
that the Khalili Collection of Aramaic Documents (example pictured) includes the earliest known use of the name "Alexandros" to refer to Alexander the Great?
Aramaic document in the Khalili Collection
Aramaic document in the Khalili Collection
12 January 2021
that the Khalili Collection of Hajj and the Arts of Pilgrimage has a 16th-century manuscript (pictured) showing Alexander the Great praying at the Kaaba?
Folio depicting Alexander the Great at the Kaaba
Folio depicting Alexander the Great at the Kaaba
16 March 2021
that the basic design for the sitaras that decorate the Kaaba dates back to the 16th century? - 29 April 2021
that, on arriving at Mecca with a pilgrim caravan, the mahmal was given an elaborate fabric covering? - 28 May 2021
that the Khalili Collection of Islamic Art includes an exceptionally large 17th-century astrolabe (pictured) commissioned by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan?
Astrolabe in the Khalili Collection
Astrolabe in the Khalili Collection
3 June 2021
that a 17th-century illustrated manuscript of the Anis Al-Hujjaj shows pilgrims sailing from the Indian subcontinent to Arabia (pictured)?
Illustration from the Anis Al-Hujjaj
Illustration from the Anis Al-Hujjaj
1 July 2021
that Muhammad Sadiq's photographs were the first ever taken of the Islamic holy sites in Mecca and Medina? - 15 September 2021
that the Dar al-Kiswa in Egypt made ornamental curtains for the Kaaba in Mecca? - 17 March 2022
that the UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity includes value systems, traditions, and beliefs in its definition of culture? - 5 June 2022
that the British Museum's 2012 exhibition Hajj: Journey to the Heart of Islam included textiles from the Kaaba (example pictured) that were described as bringing "a visceral artistic buzz to the display"?
Sitara from the door of the Kaaba
Sitara from the door of the Kaaba
31 December 2022
that Musa va 'Uj (pictured) depicts figures from all three Abrahamic religions?
Musa va 'Uj
Musa va 'Uj
25 April 2023
that opening a Falnama on a painting of the queen of the fairies (example pictured) meant a prediction of good fortune?
Queen of the fairies in the Khalili Falnama
Queen of the fairies in the Khalili Falnama
13 October 2023
that Nusrati attributes the virtues of a good ruler to his patron Ali Adil Shah II in The Rose Garden of Love (manuscript scene pictured)
Scene from The Rose Garden of Love
Scene from The Rose Garden of Love
19 November 2023
that most objects in the travelling exhibition Empire of the Sultans bore calligraphy (example pictured)?
Calligraphic tiles from the Empire of the Sultans
Calligraphic tiles from the Empire of the Sultans
18 January 2024

Wikidata-driven visualisations[edit]

As a by-product of the catalogue data which is being added to Wikidata, we can generate maps, timelines and other visualisations of objects in the Khalili Collections, as well as combining Khalili data with other collections.

On-wiki resources[edit]

The second Featured Picture to come from the partnership

Wikidata[edit]

Coverage[edit]

Effect of the COVID-19 lockdown[edit]

The original intent was that I would visit Khalili Foundation properties at least monthly to talk to staff and examine/ inform attitudes towards Wikimedia. That has not been possible, and some of the issues are best discussed face-to-face, thus this limits the ability of the project to effect cultural change. So we are preparing a report/ presentation to deliver remotely if necessary, using the impressive statistics of what the project has achieved to convince people that Wikimedia is crucially relevant to their work.

I was going to consult collection catalogues and exhibition catalogues during visits to London. So instead I have been sent books in the post. I made a first visit to London in May 2021 and used the opportunity to start consult publications. Bulk image uploads, which would also have been the basis of a data set in Wikidata, were delayed. Just before the lockdown, we did a batch upload of kimono images to refine the process. The lockdown disrupted staff access to the server with the images on it, so we could not do large bulk uploads. For a while I was getting images from the Khalili Collections web site, plus some via email, and manually uploading them as needed.