New Zealand now has 45,000 low-res images from the nation’s museums under Creative Commons. They’re on Artstor as a public collection.

A search “within collection” for keyword cat had 48 good results. One can then right-click on a result and load it in a new tab. From there it’s easy to get a download, and there’s only the lightest of barriers.

My test downloads, however, were all low-res (1024px, 96dpi), while the viewer images appear to be much higher res but are locked inside a tile-viewer. The downloads are just about of a size to be amenable to A.I.-driven resolution scaling, though.

Original of Marion Queenie Kirker’s 1930s portrait of an old sailor, 1024px:

A.I. up-rez to 2400px and a quick colourise:

Not ideal, but there are no jaggies and it’s acceptable for a wide-bordered page in a PDF magazine. One would have to retrieve the larger tiled image and re-assemble, if one wanted better.

Results relevance is keyword-based, rather than having kittee-trained A.I. identify that there’s a cat in the picture. But the relevance ranking is fairly good, at least on this test.