Most of you have probably heard about Google’s new venture, the Google Art Project, If you haven’t heard about it and you’re an art lover, it’s definitely worth checking out, as it’s generating quite a lot of buzz. In a collaboration with some of the world’s most prestigious art museums, the Google Art Project takes you on a dazzling virtual tour, replete with extremely high resolution images of famous paintings which are remarkable. You can also navigate through the museums themselves, watch videos on the YouTube channel and experience art in the most interactive way available. Only visiting the museums in person, which is not practical for everybody, could bring you closer to the artwork.
Among the eminent museums on board with the Google Art Project are the Hermitage, the Uffizi Gallery, the Tate Britain, the Van Gogh Museum, and New York’s own Metropolitan Museum and MoMA. Notably absent from the list so far are the Louvre in Paris and the Prado in Madrid. But I’m guessing that they will partner with Google Art Project in due time, since the project is still in its infancy.
As to be expected, “art critic” types are already raising concerns and the usual elitist objections. This article in The Telegraph discusses some of those concerns. But H Niyazi, a commenter here on Museworthy, praises the Google Art Project on his superb art history blog Three Pipe Problem. Read his discussion in this post and again in this one.
In my opinion the Google Art Project, while still in its rudimentary stages, has the potential to become a useful and inspiring online art history resource. Right now it lacks some key features like informative text and a search feature. But I’m sure those improvements will come. So far it looks like they’re off to an excellent start.
I’d love to hear what Museworthy readers think of the Google Art Project. If anyone has thoughts or opinions, please share them in comments!