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Art takes a Street View

Google launched a new powered by site called Art Project, and while many of you who don't get out to museums that often or never, it is not that good of a substitution for actually going out and visiting a museum. Alas, I am just a bit disappointed in how Google launched this new service. Most museum websites do a better job displaying their galleries online than the gimmicky view offered by Art Project. What appalls me the most is the lack of copyright watermarks on all the photos. In the site's privacy policy there is a statement about use of the imagery, but who is really going to take the time to read the mice type?

Having seen the following museums in person...

Archaeological Museum at Olympia (Greece)
Art Institute of Chicago
J. Paul Getty Museum
Japanese American Art Museum (Los Angeles)
Los Angeles Metropolitan Museum of Art
Museum of Contemporary Art (Los Angeles)
National Gallery of Art
Norton Simon Museum
Portland Art Museum
Seattle Art Institute
Shanghai Museum (China)
Smithsonian Institution
Topkapi Palace Museum (Turkey)

...and many others

I am not impressed by this horrendous stab at art appreciation by Google.

If Google really wanted to help museums attract more business and on-site foot traffic, they could have launched it as a new web-hosting service (with free, limited time public viewing) for current and archived museum gallery pieces. I don't know what this is. Flickr for museums?

There is a certain awesomeness when you stand in a gallery filled with the works by Monet, van Gogh, Seurat, Renoir, or Degas. Is it the smell of the paint? The creak of the gallery floor? The quiet murmurings of other museum patrons? The stillness that evokes the imagination when viewing art?

To me, Google Art Project is just another thematic image-hosting site.
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