Virtual museums & art gallery tours for art lovers stuck at home!
Art gallery is an affordable entertainment and a great source of inspiration for art admirers. Exploring art galleries and museums not just boosts creativity but gives knowledge of art, science, culture, and history. For me, museums and art galleries are stressbusters.
COVID19 has turned out to be the biggest enemy of art lovers. Stringent lockdown rules are not only forcing people to stay indoors, but also led to the closure of the art galleries and museums. Now people who are addicted to arts and culture education cannot satisfy themselves just with food or binge-watching Netflix or reading books.
But life is not that hard either in this digital age!
You can go to the museum without compromising on quarantine and self-isolation!
Google Arts & Culture has partnered with over 2500 museums and galleries across the globe including the British Museum, the Guggenheim, the National Gallery, Vatican Museums to name a few.
So, art fanatics from any part of the world can enjoy virtual art gallery tours and online exhibits of some of the popular and iconic museums around the world. Besides museums, you can also explore some renowned historical and cultural heritage sites. Some of the museums like the Louvre are offering virtual art gallery tours on their websites.
Amazing digital initiatives. Isn’t it?
No more long queues or buying tickets. Get on your comfy couch anytime and start accessing world-class art, paintings, sculptures, and many more. Don’t worry about missing minute details. Modern technology helps you engage and immerse in the famous artworks with options like a 360-degree tour, walk around tours, high-quality close-up, zoom in and out options, interactive guides, videos with voiceover and descriptions, and other options.
Are you ready for the digital art adventure?
Here are the best virtual museums & art gallery tours to take when stuck at home:
1. British Museum, London
It is the World’s first national museum opened in 1759 in the heart of London. A great source to know about human history with priceless artifacts from all over the world. Explore the Great court that has a beautiful, doomed ceiling studded with 3,212 panes of glass, where no two are the same. Other ancient wonders that you can see closely through the virtual tour are Rosetta Stone, Elgin Marbles. Egyptian mummies and some of the most prized possessions. With crazy graphics, the virtual tour becomes more intuitive.
2. The National Gallery, London
Another hotspot among art lovers! National Gallery offers 3 virtual tours: one showcasing 18 gallery rooms, one Google virtual tour, and one showing the Sainsbury Wing. Now you can watch the panoramic view of the museum’s halls that gives the same pleasure as experienced in reality.
Using the virtual tools you can explore a wide collection of priceless masterpieces dating from the mid-13th century to 1900. There are more than 2000 publicly-owned drawings and paintings and European art from different times. Vincent van Gogh’s Sunflowers, the Virgin on the Rocks by Da Vinci, the Arnolfini Portrait by Jan Van Eyck, and J.M.W Turner’s The Fighting Temeraire are among the popular ones. The 360-view virtual touring pages covers seven exhibition spaces of Renaissance art and the Central Hall. Isn’t that enough to satiate your soul for the time being?
3. The Dalí Museum, Florida
This internationally recognized museum sustained by the culture of philanthropy features 2,400 Salvador Dalí works, including nearly 300 oil paintings, watercolors and drawings. You can explore more than 2,100 prints, photographs, sculptures, posters, textiles,and objets d’art.
It is deemed as “one of the top buildings to see in your lifetime” by AOL Travel News. Further, Architectural Digest has claimed the museum to be one of the ten most interesting museums in the world. The place will surely stimulate your mind, while stuck at home! You can also make most of the virtual tour through the free Dalí Museum App on your smartphone. Please don’t miss that geodesic glass bubble called The Enigma — crafted with 1,062 triangular glass panels!
4. The Guggenheim, New York
Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, Guggenheim offers a memorable experience to visitors. That spiral staircase is the most instagammable part of the Gugg. Besides, you get to view a huge collection of art from the Impressionist, Modern, and Contemporary eras. Google Street View tour allows you to enjoy the galleries shaped like membranes in citrus fruit. And closely view pieces by great artists like Marc, Mondrian, Picasso, Kandinsky, and Miró.
All you need is a laptop or Google Cardboard technology and you’re ready to immerse in the world of arts to your heart’s content. You will be glad to know that Guggenheim’s online database features some 1,700 artworks by more than 625 artists.
5. The Frick Museum, New York City
You will get here high-quality collections of old master paintings, sculptures, works of European artists, 18th-century French furniture, Limoges enamel, and Oriental rugs. Most of these collections focus on the art of the Western tradition from the fourth century to the mid-twentieth century. With the help of The Frick’s virtual gallery tour, you can click on each item to view the historical details closely and also grasp information related to drawings, paintings, sculptures, prints, and illuminated manuscripts.
6. The Courtald Museum Virtual Gallery, London
The Museum offers a virtual gallery tour of seven rooms as it was before it was closed. With new photography technology, users can zoom in to see the artwork. The outstanding close-up quality is the advantage because you can feel the masterpieces (from individual brush strokes to the texture of the paint) just like you feel when visiting the museum in person.
The Courtald gallery collection includes drawings, paintings, sculptures, and other masterpieces from medieval to modern times. The museum is famous for its French Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings. Some of the famous ones are Vincent van Gogh’s Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear or Édouard Manet’s A Bar at the Folies-Bergère, from individual brush strokes to the texture of the paint.
7. Musée d’Orsay, Paris
Another grand museum holding a large collection of impressionist and post-Impressionist works in the world. You can explore and experience them to the fullest through its own virtual tour. Enjoy the works of Monet and Gauguin, van Gogh, Degas, and many more artists. An additional factor of excitement is an online exhibition on the history of the building. Plus the Tourist Tube offers the 360-degree view of the magnificent exterior.
Lot more overwhelming and less exhausting!
8. The Louvre, Paris
Cursing lockdown because you had to put off a trip to Paris? No worries. It’s the largest and most visited museum in the world and offers three virtually gallery tours, which is the same as visiting in person.
This is the place where you get Mona Lisa, the famous pieces of art in the world. Also, there are hundreds of other breathtaking art and magnificent collections of Egyptian antiquities, the remains of the Louvre moat, Galerie d’ Apollon and not to forget the glass pyramids outside the Louvre and the treasures of Napoleon’s Apartments.
9. The Broad, Los Angeles
A digital tour of this psychedelic contemporary art museum is a must when you’re stuck indoors due to lockdown. You can easily kill your time exploring the Yayoi Kusama’s ‘Infinite Mirrored Room’ at the Broad. Also, watch a video of Kusama’s artwork with a mindblowing soundtrack. Binge watch the impressive online collection, whimsical and otherworldly exhibits, instructional Family Workshops, and series called Interplay: Poetry and Art and many more.
Exciting isn’t it?
10. J Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
Getty Museum is one of the most popular places for art on the west coast of the US. Two things that are worth your lockdown time are Getty’s sunny sculpture plaza and garden terrace. You can find here creative treasures dating back 6000 years. The digital tour covers a lot including Van Gogh’s Irise and La Promenade by Renior and many priceless sculptors. You can explore 5 exhibits of this museum through Google Arts and Culture tool. These are –
- The Art of Three Faiths: Torah, Bible, Qur’an
- 18th Century Pastel Portraits
- Eat, Drink, and Be Merry
- Getty Museum Acquisitions 2019
- Heaven, Hell, and Dying Well
Not only closely look at inside gallery spaces, but get relevant information from clickable artworks and the finest collection of photographs from the world.
11. Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam
Wish to explore the masterworks from the Dutch Golden Age? Then Rijksmuseum in the Netherlands is the right place for you. Enjoy a street view tour of this grand museum right from your couch. Thanks to Google! Describing the beauty and grandeur of the Great Hall is beyond what words can encompass. Online exhibitions with interactive tour will give you the same feel as if you’re present right at the museum.
There is a vast collection of classical Dutch art, Asian artifacts, and 17th-century silver and porcelain and myriad historical objects. Immerse yourself in the brilliant artworks of Vermeer, Rembrandt, and other Dutch masters.
12. National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City
It’s the largest and most visited museum in Mexico. And home to significant archaeological and anthropological artifacts from Mexico’s pre-Columbian heritage and the Mayan civilization. Stone of the Sun and the Aztec Xochipilli statue are must on every visitor’s list. Google visitors can access around 140 items from their cozy bedroom.
13. Vatican Museums, Rome
Worst hit by Coronavirus, Italy is under total lockdown. But, none can you stop you from taking a deep dive into the spectacular vaulted ceiling, intricate murals and tapestries of the Vatican Museum. Do you know its a home to 70,000 artworks and artifacts spanning centuries? Thanks to the virtual art gallery tour by its website. You can wander seven spaces and the galleries very close and marvel at Michelangelo’s ceiling inside the Sistine Chapel and other sites full of jaw-dropping creativity. With the help of You Visit tour, you can also take a look at the rest of the city and get interesting information on each significant site provided by the tour guide.
14. National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, South Korea
One of the popular museums in Korea that attract people from all over the world. But, with Google’s virtual tour you can access this museum from anywhere in the world. Since 1986 this fine arts museum has been a cornerstone of Korean culture and art education. The main museum is in Gwacheon and its three branches each in Deoksugung, Seoul, and Cheongju. You will love the six floors of Contemporary art from Korea and all over the globe. Not just a Korean artwork but you’ll get to explore an inspiring mix of print, design, sculpture, photography, new media, and other large-scale installations by established and new artists. Get ready for a culturally rewarding experience!
15. MASP, São Paulo, Brazil
The first modern museum of Brazil with broadest historical collections! You can view it all from a virtual art gallery platform. The wondrous display of the artwork (dating from the 14th to 20th centuries) is what makes the museum special. The paintings appear suspended around the open-plan space, and on the air on crystal easels. This will leave you awestruck! What are you waiting for? Get your laptop and start exploring now!
So how was the whimsical journey through art and creativity? Let me know in the comments. If you enjoyed the virtual art gallery tours then please share with your friends!