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Visit from Anywhere Through Virtual Museum Experiences

23 April 2020

When we think of visiting a museum, we often think of wandering through galleries, examining objects and artworks, listening to audio guides and learning through gallery tours. The beauty of experiencing a museum in person is that we can immerse ourselves within a time capsule of art, history and stories, sparking a feeling of wonder as we see our world in ways we never imagined before. But the museum experience doesn’t have to stop there — museums are living institutions built to tell stories of art, objects, culture and people, and these stories transcend the walls of a building.

Especially during hard times like this, when we may feel constricted and constrained within this strange new reality of life, we find ourselves seeking out comfort in things and activities we know and love. Now more than ever, we need art and wonder and reminders of the beauty of this world. And although we cannot physically walk through the doors of museums right now, we can turn to virtual experiences like those on Google Arts & Culture to break away from our daily routines and find escape in the world of art and culture.

Google Arts & Culture is a platform that enables museums to feature their digitised collections through stunning high resolution images that anyone can explore. By utilizing Google Street View technology, the site also provides virtual tours of museum galleries from all around the world. So you can wander through the ruins of ancient buildings in the Pergamon Museum in Berlin or get lost in the works of Renaissance masters in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.


Google Arts & Culture Museum Tours

Locally, The National Museum of Qatar, The Museum of Islamic Art, and Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art have each created a spotlight on the beauty and reverence of Arab art by offering a unique virtual experience through Google Arts & Culture. You may have physically seen these collections before through the barrier of a glass case, but through this platform you can interact with the objects and artworks in a more intimate way. You are able to go into a microscopic level of detail by zooming into the fascinating objects and see things that you couldn’t with the naked eye.


Fragments of an Abbasid Cup (9th Century) – National Museum of Qatar
5 Bowl Series (10th Century) – National Museum of Qatar

In addition, Google Arts & Culture offers virtual storytelling journeys where you can learn about the art and history of Qatar through online exhibitions. For example, the National Museum of Qatar offers a fascinating exhibition on “The History of Trade in Qatar”, which includes the uniquely beautiful objects in this collection, from jewellery to ceramics.


The History of Trade in Qatar – National Museum of Qatar

Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art offers a captivating exhibition highlighting “Modern To Contemporary” artworks, while The Museum of Islamic Art offers a virtual tour in which you can engage with the galleries by traveling through the museum space.


Virtual Tour of the Museum of Islamic Art

What also makes this online platform special is that it connects different museums and collection holders across countries, so if you find an object of particular interest, you can find out about similar objects and pieces from other museums around the world.

Platforms such as Google Arts & Culture offer an alternate and accessible way to experience art from wherever you are, allowing museums to reach audiences beyond their physical walls. While physical experiences offer a tangibility that virtual ones never can, the online museum experience creates an exciting opportunity to interact with art, history and stories from all around the world, helping keep us all connected while we stay in place.

Stay tuned to our blog for upcoming posts featuring collection highlights from our various Google Arts & Culture collections!


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