According to a Haaretz article (full text below), the Israel Museum announced yesterday that it was joining the Google Art Project, a venture designed to make the holdings of major museums around the world more accessible on-line through virtual visits.
Before long, several hundred of the museum’s treasures, from all its collections (note: not just archaeology!), will be viewable in high-resolution images. If you’ve ever bemoaned the fact that, without some special dispensation, no photography is allowed in the museum’s galleries… Well, there you go! Incidentally, viewing the Google Art Project site with the Windows Explorer browser requires a special downloadable “Chrome Frame” (of course) — they’ll tell you all about it. Enjoy…
UPDATE / 04 APR: Here’s a case where I happened to see the on-line article first, then the print edition (over breakfast). The latter is longer and contains additional details but has not made it on-line yet; when it does, I will try to post the link here. One tidbit: Each of the 44 museums in the project has been invited to select one object or work for special photography employing new giga-pixel technology which can reveal things not visible to the naked eye, even up close — tiny brush-strokes or an object’s surface patina. It will be interesting to see which item the Israel Museum picks for the special treatment! It remains to be seen whether the images in the Google project are downloadable (free) by normal means — Does anybody know? Anyway, stay tuned…
Israel Museum joins Google Art Project
Thanks to the Israel Museum’s inclusion in the internet giant’s art venture, online users will be able to view high-resolution images of 520 pieces from the museum’s collection.
By Daniel Rauchberger
Art connoisseurs around the globe will find it easier to visit Israel Museum, after the Jerusalem institute announced on Tuesday it was joining the Google Art Project, which provides online tours of the world’s top museums.
The addition of Israel’s preeminent museum to the digital project was announced in a press conference participated by Culture and Sports Minister Limor Livnat.
Thanks to the Israel Museum’s inclusion in the Google Art Project, online users will be able to view high-resolution images of 520 pieces from the museum’s collection.
Among the works made available online are Monet’s water lilies; a Bronze-Era figurine of the god Reshef; as well as a 9,000-year-old Neolithic stone mask, one of the oldest to have ever been found.
The Google Art Project was launched in 2011, and, at first, included a limited number of international museums. This year, the internet giant decided to expand the project, adding many more museums as well as galleries.
At this point, the project includes 151 partners in Europe, the Americas, Asia, and Africa, featuring works from such museums as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Van Gogh Museum, and many more.