About this blog

This is my blog on the arts scene of Carrboro, Chapel Hill and surrounding Triangle communities. I'll focus on visual arts and the 2ndFriday Artwalk and other visual art events but that doesn't mean I won't chat about music, literary events, film or anything else in the local creative world. Please email with ideas, links, comments or brickbats. [I have comment moderation on so if you don't see your comment right away that means that I haven't had a chance to approve it yet. Sorry, but the spammers.....]

Friday, April 13, 2012

Google Art Project, V2.0 (not about Carrboro)

You may remember a post of mine on the Google Art Project a repository of images from the great museums of the world and the great artists of history. I was impressed, particularly by the ability to zoom in on some of the paintings. For example you could really see the brushstrokes and the depth in Van Gogh's Sunflowers.

So now we have V2.0 which is reviewed by Roberta Smith of the NYT here. She pretty much nails it so go there for details. There is much to be thrilled about and one big thing and some smaller things worthy of big upgrades.

To be thrilled about:
  • The sheer size of the project. It contains 131 museums and 32,000 works. You can spend days and days poking around.
  • Incredible depth in 19th Century art: Impressionists like Van Gogh, Pissaro, Degas, Manet, Monet, etc, great American painters like Winslow Homer, John Singer Sargent,William Merritt Chase, and Thomas Eakins
  • More high resolution images to zoom in on
  • Ancient works and works from non-Western traditions
  • Real depth and breadth except......
To be sorely disappointed about:
  • The 20th Century hardly exists, e.g. nada, nil, naught, nothing by Picasso. Or Pollock. Or Duchamp. One by Joan Mitchell, de Kooning, Clyford Still (and not a very good one), and Diebenkorn (but at least it's a good one). If it weren't for the Todelo (Toledo!) Museum of Art (the only Louis Morris, or de Kooning or Delaunay, one of the few Hoppers and Mondrians) the century would be even more bare. And we can thank the Savannah College of Art & Design Museum for all 7 of the Romare Beardens. It's as if Dada and the Abstract Expressionists never existed. I know there are copyright issues but this is ridiculous!
  • Missing some biggie museums. The Louvre anyone?
  • Artists are sorted by first name. What is that about?
  • The interface still needs improvement
Still it's an art lover's marvel and if V3.0 improves it as much as the jump to v2.0 I'll be one happy camper.
copyright NYT
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