Google Art Project or better Art Project, powered by Google brings the technology of Google Maps Street View into a handful of the world’s best art museums, 17 to be precise.
Right now Google says there are 410 related articles so I assume you have read a lot, maybe enough. If you hadn’t enough yet, here are some interesting links and personal thoughts I’ve collected on the subject so far.
* It’s undoubtable that the project is reaching new audiences in an innovative way and I’m quite positive each of the 410 articles mentioned above are saying so.
* Sir Nicholas Serota, director of the Tate, said that the website will encourage people to recognize that you shouldn’t just walk past a picture but you stand in front of it and the longer you stand, the more you get from it but also that it offers museums a new form of collaboration among museums, moving them us from being ‘keepers’ to ‘sharers’ of art online.
* Even though navigating through the virtual galleries can be mesmerizing, the Street View technology can be at times quite frustrating. More than once I found myself bumping into the walls (while trying to access galleries that were not photographed for the project) or directing my attention to the blurred paintings (I suppose for copyright reasons) instead to those I was looking for. It seems indeed that the closer a virtual experience gets to a genuine experience, its deficiencies become more apparent, not less.
* Tate Blog is bringing us some behind the scenes stories about how they put all this together.
* The gigapixel scans enable a kind of encounter with the art that is not even possible in the galleries but I believe it’s not, and will never be, a substitute for seeing the art in person.
* Is it not too early to complain on the fact that the project is far from definitive because not every celebrated museum in the world is taking part?