Imagine pulling up a stool next to the lonely diners of Edward Hopper’s “Nighthawks” or dipping your fingers in the basin of “The Child’s Bath” by Mary Cassatt.
These familiar images, along with the sunbathers of George Seurat’s “A Sunday on La Grande Jatte” and the somber figures of Grant Wood’s “American Gothic,” are among the 32,000 works of art that Google released in digital format April 3.
The technology giant partnered with 151 institutions worldwide on the Google Art Project, an online platform for virtually viewing artwork and museum galleries. The company selected the Art Institute of Chicago as the initiative’s North American launch site and hosted museum directors from across the country at a private April 3 event.
Participating institutions, from the White House to the Museo del Oro (Gold Museum) in Bogota, Colombia, selected works from their vast collections to contribute to the Google Art Project. Of this group, 46 museums had their galleries photographed using Google Street View technology, which compiles a 360-degree panorama to create a virtual-tour experience in a high-definition format called gigapixel. Some of the works in Google’s online collection are also rendered in gigapixels.
“The gigapixel imagery of ‘La Grande Jatte’ was truly mind-boggling,” said Sam Quigley, vice president for collections management, imaging, and information technology at the Art Institute. “They took something like 702 images, little pieces of the painting, by photographic technique and stitched together a big mosaic so you’ll be able to zoom incredibly close and see the individual points of paint that the artist used to create that work. It’s really quite something. That’s a technology leadership role that really only a few corporations like Google could provide.”
About Holt Think: Ed, Creativity, Tech, Administration
Tim Holt shares his views on education, creativity, education administration, technology and the merger of all of them here. Whether it is links, articles, essays, or news, he shares a ton of information. He hopes you can keep up.
My new blog, about my quest for a PhD is located at http://callingdrholt.tumblr.com
All of these entries are the sole opinion of Tim Holt and do not reflect the opinions of his employers, friends, relatives, or anyone he happens to know in passing.
All entries here are copyright (cc) Creative Commons except where noted or obvious.