Monday, February 07, 2011

The Art is in the Details: Google Art Project

Thanks to the freshly launched Google Art Project, art lovers around the world are now able to see high-resolution images of paintings and other artworks from prestigious museums like the Uffizzi, Versailles and The Metropolitan Museum of Art . Using a technology similar to Street View, it makes possible for the user to take virtual tours of different galleries.

The best feature of Google Art Project is the ability to view in incredible detail over 1000 artworks included in the program. For now, there are 17 museums participant in Google Art Project, but it is probable that there will be many more.

While watching an artwork you can sign in and create your own personalized artwork collection, and share it with your friends on different platforms.

Although some could argue that the museum visits could diminish because of it, I think it can be an useful tool for art students and art lovers around the world who will be able to see in detail the creations of the world's great masters. Of course, nothing compares to seeing the real thing yourself, but maybe Google Art Project could become over time like an expandable database of art, free to use for anyone with an internet connection. With a tool like this who knows where in the world the next Michelangelo would come up?

The 17 participant museums are:

Alte Nationalgalerie, Berlin - Germany
Freer Gallery of Art, Smithsonian, Washington DC - USA
The Frick Collection, NYC - USA
Gemäldegalerie, Berlin - Germany
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC - USA
MoMA, The Museum of Modern Art, NYC - USA
Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid - Spain
Museo Thyssen - Bornemisza, Madrid - Spain
Museum Kampa, Prague - Czech Republic
National Gallery, London - UK
Palace of Versailles - France
Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam - The Netherlands
The State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg - Russia
State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow - Russia
Tate Britain, London - UK
Uffizi Gallery, Florence - Italy
Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam - The Netherlands

Google Art Project