Thursday, August 6, 2009

Tres Cool

The Louvre is now available online. Simply visit: to explore the musuem's vast collection. You can search by keyword, by room or by department (paintings, sculptures, etc.). Additionally, there is a special area for new acquisitions.

The search engine itself is a little clunky-- it took me about 15 minutes to find the Mona Lisa room (room 6 of the Grande Gallerie-- that's her waaaayyyy at the end), and there is no actual image or information on the Mona Lisa or many of the other prominent holdings of the Louvre. Which is odd-- wouldn't da Vinci's works be some of the first, if not the very first, works you'd include? The only reason I can think that they haven't is preservation concerns, but there must be a way of getting a good image of the painting without damaging it, right?

Finding the Venus de Milo was easier, though still a little awkward. The close-up shots are also very cool, though not necessarily easy to spot-- they pop up off the tiny links below the image of the sculpture herself. And the captions are all in French, unfortunate but not surprising.

Despite these shortcomings, the ability to virtually "tour" much of the Louvre is very cool, and the close-up imagery of many of the world's most famous artwork is extremely cool. Hopefully, they will add the other premier works of art in the future.

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