The Institute houses a collection of photographs (owned by the Fitzwilliam Museum), a large part of which was given by the Royal Collection in 1976. The photographs date from the late nineteenth century and feature paintings which exist in the principal European galleries. Primarily from the studio of Braun, some photographs were made by the Italian Alinari brothers. The photographs reflect early techniques such as albumen prints and carbon prints.
The photographs are a valuable resource because of their technical complexity and art historical interest. Works of art, including those destroyed by time or war can be examined and those still which still exist can be compared to their earlier appearance. They also reflect the taste of the period in which the photographs were made. The collection comprises photographs of the works of painters such as: Raphael, Titian, Tintoretto, Fra Angelico, Bronzino, Botticelli, Bellini, Michelangelo, Rubens, Rembrandt, Van Dyck, Dürer, Van Eyck and Cranach.
The collection was indexed in 1986 by Berna Copray.