Google launches new version of its Art Project

Van Gogh Museum greatly expands the number of artworks in the Art Project

3 April 2012

Today Google launches a new version of the Google Art Project. The Van Gogh Museum has replaced the images it made available for last year's launch by new ones of a higher quality, and greatly expanded the selection of works included. Axel Rüger, Director of the Van Gogh Museum, comments: ‘We’re proud that we were involved in the first launch of this remarkable project in 2011, and that we've been able to expand our share in the Google Art Project for this new version. It's fantastic that so many more museums are now linked up to this platform, making art more accessible than in the past.’

In total, web users can now admire high-resolution images of over 30,000 art objects from more than 151 museums in 41 countries worldwide. This is a sizeable increase, compared to the original number of 1,000 artworks from just seventeen museums.

The number of Dutch museums participating in the project has also increased. Besides the Van Gogh Museum and the Rijksmuseum, the art gallery of Amsterdam’s Royal Palace has joined the ranks of museums that can be explored in a virtual tour. In addition, Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, the Kröller-Müller Museum and the Gemeentemuseum in The Hague have made part of their collection available online through the Art Project.

A broad spectrum of cultures and civilisations
Google makes it possible for art lovers to discover all kinds of artworks, from paintings and sculptures to street art and photographs, with a few clicks of the mouse. These art objects represent a broad spectrum of cultures and civilisations. Besides the art from Dutch museums, visitors can enjoy images ranging from Brazilian street graffiti to Islamic decorative art and ancient African cave drawings. The new version of the Art Project also includes some unexpected locations with superb works of art. For instance, virtual visitors can look around Barack Obama's office in the White House, in Washington DC, explore the collection of the Museum of Islamic Art in Qatar, and marvel at the astonishing details in the work of the legendary Japanese painter Hideyori Kano. Google’s Art Project represents an effort to disseminate culture online and to make it as widely accessible as possible.

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