A Day at the Museum

Written by Yasmine by Fredrik Hultén

This year has created the demand for imagination and occasionally digital rethinking from galleries and museums around the world. Specially, on how to continue the awareness and showcase their collections and exhibitions. During the year we have witnessed museums and galleries create live presentations on their social media accounts and websites. In addition, with new virtual technology bring the museum online, as a way to stay in touch with their visitors. This has created the chance for the viewer to travel to the grandiose rooms of art collections without leaving the house.

As a hope to bring art pieces closer, and the global exploration infinite, we will write about how you can dream away to cities such as Paris, New York, Seoul, Manila and many more, in just a second. Pour yourself some fresh lemonade or French hot chocolate for that matter, put on your holiday hat and join us to some of the glorious museums around the world, but also learn how the art scene might have changed for the future.

Travel with art
During the research to find their digital workshops, online exhibitions and live tours around the world, I learned that many of the museums were connected to the Google Arts & Culture, a combined art collection that includes over 2000 culture institutions in 80 countries. The Art & Culture includes older museums such as the British Museum in London, the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam and Hong Kong Heritage Museum as well as new and smaller galleries and collections. Not to mention, since the Odalisque Magazine HQ is in Stockholm, the Museum of Mediterranean and Near Eastern Antiquities have updated over 300 of their art collectors in detail online. Finding this enormous archive, with heavy resources one could travel to different parts of the world in a second, learning about sculptures, painters and historical archaeology findings from all over the world. You can even take a selfie and turn into a painting. The platform gave at least myself the opportunity to find new galleries and art collections I haven’t known before.

This year has certainly created an unexpected high demand from visitors but also a competitive side between the different museums and galleries to come up with new ideas on how to be close to both the longstanding and future visitors. As said previously, we have gathered a small selection of museums around the world, that you can visit from your home, through the Arts & Culture as well as individual initiatives. The links to the respective museum can be found at the end of the article.

The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York
At the Solomon R. Guggenheim museum’s website, you can see art pieces from the Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, Modern and Contemporary eras. The museum also offers At-Home Art classes for kids every week. In addition to Virtual Guided Tours. Not to mention the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao have had live presentations on their Instagram IGTV, where some of the videos are still there. Where you can see some of the art collections presented.

National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul
One of Korea’s popular museums can be accessed from anywhere around the world through the Art & Culture platform and virtual tour. It takes you through six floors of Contemporary art from Korea, as well as on their website you can see guided tours through some of the exhibitions, as well as lectures in subjects such as video, performance and art.

The British Museum
The British Museum has one of the largest and most comprehensive collections of human history and arts. You can now browse through some of its 8 million objects in their virtual exhibit. The online museum includes for example the famed Rosetta Stone, from Egypt, which you can view in amazing detail. The virtual exhibit features a timeline on all the pieces through Ancient Greece, the dynasties of Egypt, The African Galleries and much more.

Pergamon Museum, Berlin
One of Germany’s largest museums, Pergamon is home to ancient artefacts including the Ishtar Gate of Babylon and, of course, the Pergamon Altar. On their individual website the first thing you witness is the website for their online exhibitions and virtual tours - all redirected and in their collaboration with Art & Culture. On their virtual tours you can learn more about what actually happened at Pergamon and how the art piece ended up in Berlin. In addition, you can walk through a 360 degree view of the over 2,000 year old Pergamon Altar - which is absolutely amazing.

National Museum of Fine Arts, Manilla
The National Museum of Fine Arts in Manilla, also known as the National Art Gallery, houses several art pieces from as early as the 17th century in the Philippines. In celebration of its 119th Foundation Day, the National Museum recently launched Sulyap Museo, a 360-degree virtual tour where visitors can virtually walk through its galleries.

Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam
Anyone who is a fan of this painter can explore his legacy by virtually visiting this museum – the largest collection of artworks by Vincent van Gogh, including over 200 paintings, 500 drawings, and over 750 personal letters. You can also learn and explore the artworks and dive into the stories about Vincent van Gogh, the museum also has a children’s section where you can print out artwork and have the kids (our yourself for that matter) paint some of Van Gogh’s art pieces.

The Louvre, Paris
The museum of Louvre can have you lost in the different art collections for hours, even days. So, I can only imagine how much art there is to see online.  For example, there are online tours of the Petite Galerie, Galerie d'Apollon and not to mention they have a Virtual Reality Experience of Leondardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa. Furthermore, created a library of videos on their YouTube page where you can join tours.

African Artists' Foundation, Lagos
Established in 2007 in Lagos, Nigeria, African Artists’ Foundation aims to encourage the highest standard of art in Africa. The foundation creates art exhibitions, festivals, workshops with the aim of unearthing and developing talent, and providing a platform to express creativity. Through their website you can walk the corridors of the gallery and view the LagosPhoto Festival and the National Art National Art Competition. LagosPhoto is the first international arts festival of photography in Nigeria. You can view the entire exhibition online, and it’s truly enchanting. In addition they have an online exhibition on female representation in contemporary art.

Many more to explore…
There are numerous more museums and galleries around the world that have created outstanding virtual experiences for visitors. For us to observe and learn more about the history of art and civilisations around the world. During the wintertime, take a moment to explore these historical pieces, it will certainly enrich your day. In addition, possibly give you a further understanding of how we all have rich history and many stories to tell that shaped the different countries today. It’s important to learn each other's history to understand the current world. These museum experiences are important so that everyone has the chance to visit and learn about these treasures that otherwise we would have to travel to, to view.

Since the museums have actively made the swift to engage digital mediums to their art collections long before this spring, with virtual guides by scanning the chosen art piece. Have podcasts or art profiles talk about the selected art piece. Perhaps will we see an increase of this with digitalization growing more and more. However, I believe, if I would hope, virtual tours, digital collections I can see through my computer - nothing will ever beat standing in a grandiose architecture room, 2 meters in front of a renaissance painting. Feel the history and breath of the room, and be a part of a moment of history.

Links to all the virtual experiences:

African Artists' Foundation

The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

The Museum of Modern Art

The British Museum

Pergamon Museum

Van Gogh Museum

The Louvre

National Museum of Fine Arts

National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art