Google’s Arts & Culture team launched its “Pocket Gallery” experiences in 2018 to allow AR-enabled smartphone users to view artwork from artists like Johannes Vermeer for the first time in history, including pieces that are usually inaccessible publicly. Today, the team announced that it’s making the entire series of Pocket Galleries available to anyone on the web.
The company’s original goal with Pocket Galleries was to digitally bring never-before-seen exhibitions straight to users in a 3D format. The new web expansion means that the galleries can now be viewed on desktop and on smartphones with or without AR capabilities, bringing even more visibility to the exhibitions.
“Simply open your favorite browser to discover all our Pocket Galleries in 3D. Take an art tour of the world in sound, go spelunking among some of the oldest paintings known to man at Chauvet Cave, marvel at miniatures scenes from ancient India, or discover the man of contradictions in Klimt vs. Klimt,” Joe Shepherd, the associate product manager at Google Arts & Culture, said in a blog post.
Users are now able to read about the history of certain artifacts and closely examine specific details in several artworks. In some galleries, an audio tour will guide users through the highlights of the exhibitions to offer historical context and other details.
Google is also introducing a new exhibition to the collection in collaboration with 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 swathed in light.” The exhibition includes 40 marine masterpieces from the collections of the Palace of Versailles, the Louvre and other prominent European museums.
“We hope you’ll enjoy uncovering maritime mysteries through our latest gallery, and experiencing our full collection of cultural curiosities from the new perspective of Pocket Galleries on the web,” Shepherd said.