If you want to explore various museums and exhibitions from the comfort of your bed or couch, the Google Arts & Culture app is one of the best ones to have. Their Pocket Gallery experiences launched back in 2018, lets you use your AR-enabled smartphones to view artwork and exhibits, some that are even not available for the public and are being seen virtually for the first time in history. Now they’re expanding those who can access these galleries by making it available on desktop and non-AR smartphones as well.
The purpose of the Pocket Gallery was to bring some of the “previously impossible exhibitions” to the public through the magic of augmented reality and AR-powered smartphones. They started with the entire Vermeer artwork collection and kept adding more galleries like the virtual construction of the lost Bauhaus buildings, an art tour of the world in sound, a spelunking exhibition at the Chauvet Cave, miniature scenes from ancient India.
Now the entire series of Pocket Galleries are available to anyone with a browser and anyone with a smartphone that doesn’t have AR capabilities. You’ll be able to read the articles about the history of the artifacts and paintings and you can also zoom-in to see the hidden detail. Some of the galleries also have audio tours to guide you to the highlights and some of the details that you may have missed.
They’re also launching a new exhibition – a guided tour in partnership with the Réunion des musées nationaux – Grand Palais (Rmn-GP) in France. It features “maritime tales, stormy landscapes, and shores swathed in light” with 40 masterpieces from the Palace of Versailles, the Louvre and other prominent European museums. If you’re into maritime history and all that then you can access this through the Pocket Gallery now.