Six of Australia’s leading art galleries are among the first in the southern hemisphere – Oceania – to join the Google Art Project, providing access to their collections online. The initiative, launched last year by our favourite internet behemoth, provides art lovers with an online platform to view super high-resolution – gigapixel – images of works from anywhere in the world. The images can show brushwork details that are not visible to the human eye.
A total of 151 cultural institutions in 40 countries are now taking part in the project. Australia’s contribution includes the National Gallery of Australia, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art, National Gallery of Victoria, Museum of Victoria and Griffith University’s Rock Art Research Centre.
Google’s Art Project is all about accessibility, bringing art to the people. The Rock Art Research Centre currently has 70 artworks on display, the National Gallery in Canberra will be showcasing a painting by Clifford Possum – a pioneer Aboriginal dot artist. Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art is showcasing 18 artists. while the NGV – National Gallery of Victoria – has a broad sweeping selecting of it’s collection online. London’s Tate Modern was the first gallery to provide free access to its collection via the project last year.
In Oceana – Australia/New Zealand – New Zealand has two galleries showcased in the Google Art Project, Auckland Art Gallery – Toi o Tamaki as well as Wellington’s Te Papa. Te Papa is New Zealands national museum, renowned for being bi-cultural and innovative.
The Google Art Project is lining up to be a major catalogue, it’s very clever, with individual works of art viewable in super-fine detail, as well as a gallery tour view/museum view.