Google Art Project lets users tour top museums online

1 Feb 2011

Google has launched Art Project, letting users access more than 1,000 pieces of art in super high resolution from 17 of the world’s best museums.

Google Art Project allows users to view art from museums such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art and MoMA in New York, The National Gallery of London and the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.

Each piece of art contains 7bn pixels, making it a thousand times more detailed than an average digital camera.

As a result, users can zoom in incredibly close to see the finer details of a piece, including brush strokes. This microscope view uses Picasa to support this high resolution.

The project has also had input from the Google Street View team. Using a new vehicle called the trolley, they took 360-degree images of the interior of each gallery.

The images were stitched together and mapped to their location, allowing Street View-like navigation in each gallery. Users can also access these galleries directly from Street View in Google Maps.

There is also a clickable annotation feature to let users jump from being inside the gallery to a full view of the painting.

There is also an info panel to allow users to read more about the artwork, to let them find more by the artist and to provide links to related YouTube videos.

Users can also save specific views of an artwork to build their own collections and can share them with friends.