Tech corner

A beginner's guide to Google Arts and Culture

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If you’re an art lover, Google has made it super simple for you to learn about your favourite pieces through a handy app.

Available online and as an app, Google Arts and Culture collaborates with over 1,200 international museums, galleries and institutions from 70 countries to make their exhibits available for everyone online.

With Google Arts and Culture, you can meet the people behind the art, visit the places they hailed from and learn about some of the most iconic events that have a huge impact on today’s world. Collections are curated by experts from the most famous museums across the globe, so whether you’re face to face with a piece of art or just browsing the app at home, you’re able to find out everything you need to know about the work in question. Once you’ve located your favourite pieces, you can also create your own collections and generate a link to share them with your friends.

Google Arts and Culture offers an exciting range of features, such as the ability to zoom in on a piece to enjoy every detail. If you’re not sure on the name of the artwork you’re looking for or the artist who created it, you can browse by specifics such as the time period it was made in or even the most frequent colour that appears in the work. For example, if you’re looking for Starry Night but you simply can’t remember the name at the time, you can filter artworks by the colours blue and yellow and the app will lead you there.

If there’s a specific gallery you’re dying to visit but you haven’t had the opportunity to make the trip, virtual tours on the app will take you inside the most famous museums in the world, where you can digitally visit iconic landmarks and read up on the pieces they contain. All of the virtual tours are curated by experts to ensure that you get a realistic and accurate experience. When you do get the chance to visit a museum or gallery in person, the Art Recognizer feature allows you to learn more about the creations you come across by pointing your phone camera at the pieces.

Undoubtedly the most fun feature of Google Arts and Culture is the Art Selfie. Made available to UK users back in September, this appears as soon as you open the app, so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding it. Once you’ve got it open, all you need to do is snap a selfie, making sure to get as much of your face in the frame as possible for a quicker and more accurate match, and the app will cycle through its database of over a thousand pieces of artwork to find the ones that most resemble your visage. As soon as you’ve got your match, the app offers the ability to share it with the world by posting the results to your social media accounts. The quirky feature might even introduce you to a new favourite artist or two.

Google Arts and Culture is available to download from both the App Store and the Play Store.

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