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Auckland Art Gallery joins Google Art Project

Today, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki opened its collection of New Zealand and international art to the world via the Google Art Project.


Today, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki opened its collection of New Zealand and
international art to the world via the Google Art Project. The Art Project aims to transform how art is viewed with the use of technology, giving a wider audience access to a range of cultural treasures.

Auckland Art Gallery joins an international list of leading galleries, including MoMA, Tate Britain, Palace of Versailles and Uffizi Gallery, that allow virtual visitors to explore their collections and navigate within their museums using interactive maps.

Regional Facilities Auckland (RFA) Chairman Sir Don McKinnon says, 'We are delighted to be a part of this innovative project. To help present some of the treasures of Auckland and New Zealand on an international platform is an honour.'

'It is a fantastic opportunity to share with the rest of the world some of the best of our New Zealand and international collection,' says RFA Gallery Director Chris Saines. 'People can learn about and enjoy New Zealand art up close even when they are on the other side of the planet.'

Auckland Art Gallery has contributed 85 artworks to the project: 56 are from its New
Zealand Pacific collection and 29 by international artists. The Gallery's two Senior
Curators, Ron Brownson (New Zealand and Pacific Art) and Mary Kisler (Mackelvie
Collection, International Art), selected the works. Examples of New Zealand art now
available via Google Art Project include Colin McCahon's On Building Bridges (1952) and paintings by Dunedin-born Frances Hodgkins.

View Auckland Art Gallery's collection on the Google Art Project

The Gallery's photography team provided high quality images of each artwork, so visitors can zoom in to see minute detail. Educational features on each artwork are also available, adding contextual information to the works, such as detailed descriptions, artist profiles and videos.

The Project hopes to drive traffic to museum websites, inspire audiences to learn more about art and share their discoveries using social media. Virtual visitors to the Art Project can create their own personal gallery by adding favourite works to an online collection, which can then be shared using social features.

Phase 1 of the Google Art Project was launched in February 2011 with 17 partner galleries from nine countries. In its first three months, its website received more than 12 million hits and 90,000 users created their own collections. It included 1061 artworks from 461 artists and 10 languages.

Phase 2 was launched today with the inclusion of museums from more countries. The Art Project aims to be truly international and include geographic areas not already represented in Phase 1. It also aims to provide access to more art. The project has introduced a wider date range to include more contemporary works and additional art forms, such as sculpture.

For more information please contact:
Tae Allison
Communications Coordinator
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki
P +64 9 307 7706
M +64 27 291 9953
E tae.allison@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

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