Art Appreciation In The Google Age

Well, it’s official. The Google empire is slowly creeping into every aspect of our lives in their attempt to gradually take over the world (…dum dum dum). Seemingly not satisfied with their title as the world’s most successful online search engine and the fact that the phrase ‘to google’ has quite literally been entered into the Oxford English Dictionary/is readily used in our tech savvy society as a useful verb, Google has now decided to enter the illustrious world of art. Just when you thought our lives couldn’t get more digitally driven – say hello to The Google Art Project.

For any art-loving, culture-hunting individuals out there who work a 9-5 job and save money by taking vegemite sandwiches from home everyday in their attempt to one day fulfill their dream of escaping to the magical world of Europe, it is finally time to pop those extra pennies away and give the piggybank a bit of a rest.

Working with 17 of the world’s most famous art galleries and museums – from the Tate Britain in London to the Alte Nationalgalerie in Berlin and the MoMA in New York, the Google Art Project employs the same technology as Google Maps and Street View to take users on a series of virtual tours. It really is quite simple. Once you have selected which Museum or Art Gallery you would like to ‘visit’ in the world, you then choose whether you would like to explore the location in its entirety or view the artworks themselves. At the click of a mouse and the swish of your cursor pad, you can zoom in on the delicate brushstrokes of a Da Vinci, wander through the ornate corridors of the Uffizi in Florence, avoid the camera clad crowds and screaming children and browse through some of the greatest masterpieces ever created – all from the comfort of your desk.

There is no denying that the experience of being in the physical presence of these artworks is a far more intimate and affecting experience than viewing them on a your 13 inch laptop screen, however for those who cannot get their hands on a plane ticket to Spain, London or Germany right now – The Google Art Project sure is an enticing alternative.

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Written By Jess Glass