Google's Art Project

Hi Everyone,

We can thank a couple of friends for reminding me to post "The Art Project" (powered by google) as a great resource to study artwork around the world without leaving your home or office. Every time I go to this website (which is fairly new), I find myself caught up in studying the details of the available paintings and keep forgetting to do a blog post. That must be a positive sign.

I hope you have the same enjoyable experience. While the selection is still limited, surely it will grow!

A friend from Smithsonian Institution sent me some details about this project - I'm forwarding part of the body of his letter below.

The Freer Gallery (Asian Art) recently participated in the Google Art Project which is an ambitious two-part examination of artworks and the museums that house them.

Part one of the project involved a single artwork from each organization imaged in gigapixel quality. This allows deep zoom and texture study; the Director of the Freer said of the results, “this allows you to experience the artworks in ways we could never accommodate in the museum.” And he’s right. Still, there are many impediments to “doing this for every painting,” so for the moment we’ll need to enjoy the ones that Google has completed. Other artworks were selected for inclusion in the site’s viewer, but aren’t imaged to gigapixel quality.

Part two involved driving a modified Google Map Street View vehicle inside the museum, and capturing several/many rooms using their familiar technology. Not great for studying the artworks, but good for getting a pre-visit handle on what the museum’s like to visit.

Both parts were completed by a Google team visiting and working in the gallery outside of regular hours.

The initial kickoff includes art from the following museums:
  • Freer Gallery of Art, Smithsonian, Washington DC - USA
  • Alte Nationalgalerie, Berlin - Germany
  • 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, London - UK
  • Uffizi Gallery, Florence - Italy
  • Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam - The Netherlands
Check out the project  when you get a chance, I think you’ll enjoy it.

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