Fascinating use of technology to create art, as well as commentary on the entwinement of copyrights, international access, art, and technology.
The Google Art Project
allows art enthusiasts to visit distant museums online by scanning them
with the same 15-lens camera rigs used by Google Street View. Due to
copyright restrictions, however, certain paintings needed to be blurred,
just like faces are in GSV.
British artist Phil Thompson was intrigued by the foggy interruptions. His project Copyrights
is his exploration of Google’s grand, utopian exercise in bringing
culture to the masses. For it, Thompson makes screen grabs of the
blurred images in his browser window, sends them to the Dafen Oil Painting Village in China (a company that makes acrylic paintings of absolutely anything to order) and then exhibits those works in a gallery.
“I am really interested in glitches; the moments when things fail and reveal themselves,” says Thompson.
The Google Art Project currently displays over 45,000 artworks by
nearly 10,000 artists across 261 collections. It allows anyone to
explore the halls of art meccas such as the Louvre and Tate Modern and
take in their favorite Bruce Nauman or Caravaggio.
However, despite the hundreds of official partnerships Google has
made with institutions, the Google Art Project must blur artworks that
are copyright protected. Usually, it’s works that are not in
institutions’ permanent collections that are hazed. Copyrights is meant to ask questions about the commodification and global reach of art as it is pushed through our digital lives.
- Google Online Art Project Adds More Artwork, 20 Museums (eweek.com)
- Exploring the Google Art Project (churchmusiclibrary.wordpress.com)