Google’s Arts & Culture team launched its “Pocket Gallery” experiments in 2018 to allow users of AR-compatible smartphones to view for the first time in history works by artists like Johannes Vermeer, including pieces that are generally inaccessible to the public. Today, the team announced that they are making the entire series of pocket galleries available to everyone on the web.
The company’s initial goal with Pocket Galleries was to digitally deliver never-before-seen exhibits directly to users in a 3D format. The new web extension means that galleries can now be viewed on desktop and smartphones with or without AR capabilities, bringing even more visibility to the exhibits.
“Simply open your favorite browser to explore all of our Pocket Galleries in 3D. Take a tour of the artistic world in sound, caving among the oldest paintings known to man at Chauvet Cave, marvel at miniature scenes from ancient India or learn about the man of contradictions in Klimt vs. Klimt, ”Joe Shepherd, associate product manager at Google Arts & Culture, said in a blog post.
Users can now read the history of certain artifacts and take a close look at specific details of multiple works of art. In some galleries, an audio tour will guide users through the highlights of the exhibits to provide historical context and other details.
Google is also introducing a new exhibition in the collection in collaboration with the Réunion des Musées Nationaux – Grand Palais (Rmn-GP) in France. Users can now take a virtual guided tour to discover “maritime tales, stormy landscapes and shores bathed in light”. The exhibition includes 40 marine masterpieces from the collections of the Palace of Versailles, the Louvre and other leading European museums.
“We hope you enjoy unraveling the Maritime Mysteries through our latest gallery and discovering our comprehensive collection of cultural curiosities from the new Pocket Galleries perspective on the web,” Shepherd said.
To view the Pocket Galleries exhibits, you can visit the Google Arts & Culture website or download the Google Arts & Culture app for Android or iOS.