In its ever-expanding quest to educate the world by giving access us to an armada of encyclopedic knowledge at our fingertips, Google is now looking to make us a little bit more cultured as well. With the recent launch of its new Arts & Culture app, Google is trying to make history and art cool again through the use of advanced technology and immersive virtual reality capabilities. The Arts & Culture app is both a wet dream for the creative minded and an amazing stepping-stone for those who like art, but just can’t seem to “get it.” With the ability to explore the art and culture of more than 70 countries with access to thousands of museums across the world, Google’s Arts & Culture app is bringing the magnificence of the world into the palm of our hands.
To help get the uninitiated started, each day Google’s Arts & Culture app will display a different featured article much like Wikipedia. One day it could highlight Claude Monet’s Impressionist paintings, the next it could feature the history of the famed Musée d’Orsay in Paris. The app can also get extremely specific – for example, you could call up the presence of clock towers throughout artwork since Medieval times if you wish to. For those who dare to actually venture outside the comfort of their own homes and into an actual museum, your bravery and gumption will be rewarded through the app’s “The Art Recognizer” feature, which will allow you to point your phone at a painting and pull up a mountain of background information about it. Currently, this feature only works in Washington D.C.’s National Gallery of Art, London’s Dulwich Picture Gallery and Sydney’s Art Gallery of New South Wales. However, the list of compatible museums will be expanded very soon.
Don’t worry – I didn’t forget about the virtual reality component. Compatible with standard VR devices like Google Cardboard, the Arts & Culture app can take users through a virtual tour of many of the world’s most renowned museums, plant users smack dab in the middle of vibrant street art scenes like the one in Rome, take users back in time to explore ancient Greek temples or the Great Pyramids and even fully immerse them inside a famous piece of art. After all, if you can’t be there in person to gaze upon the majesty of some of the artistic wonders of the world, virtually exploring and immersing yourself in them is the next best option. With Google’s Arts & Culture app, art and culture have never been this accessible.