Augmented reality and how artists and institutions used it to make culture a home experience during the pandemic-Art-and-culture News, Firstpost

If visitors could no longer visit the works of art, perhaps AR could help them bring them.

Photo by Zoran Pajic /

The past decade has seen the art world embrace augmented reality (RA) technology in various forms. From individual artists to galleries and institutions such as museums and public art initiatives, AR has been used not only to enhance viewers ’artistic experiences (e.g., including historical or factual information, exhibition, etc.). , but also adding layers to the interactive. experience (movement, graphics, animation that are added to the visible work).

RA is different from virtual reality in that it increases / improves or adds to a pre-existing reality. While virtual reality requires the use of specialized equipment such as glasses or headphones for the user to immerse themselves in a fictional world, RA can only be experienced using a smartphone or a specific application. If you ever wished the art in our muggle world was more like that of Harry Potter universe: subjects that move by frames, always in motion, RA makes it possible.

The Pokémon Go craze (the app has been downloaded more than 11 million times worldwide) showed how ubiquitous AR technology could be and its popularity across age, geography and other demographic parameters. It is not surprising, then, that the arts sector has also used AR in a number of ways.

The technology giants are involved

Google, Facebook, Apple and Microsoft have kept in touch with artists and, in some cases, with institutions such as the Tate Museum, to organize RA art projects. From Apple [AR]The T initiative, curated by the New Museum, saw her take public art walks in Central Park, New York City, where spectators were taken to various locations in the park where works of art had been installed. specific art and used their phones to experience the elements of RA as speech bubbles, animated sequences, text and audio elements as a reading of poetry.

However, technology companies have criticized these initiatives because they are often brand-based. For example, Apple [AR]The T initiative forced users to visit an Apple store, use an iPhone and Apple wireless headphones to experience the public art ride around Central Park. As writer Ben Davis concluded, the viewer did not experience so much art or artificial reality, but experienced virtual art / reality. through Apple’s corporate framework. In other words, the product and not the art was the focus.

Institutions and AR

Major museums and galleries around the world have made use of RA so that their visitors can experience meaningful collections in completely new ways. For example, the National Museum of Singapore developed an interactive RA experiment around images from William Farquhar’s Collection of Natural History Drawings, which depicted 3D animations:

Art Gallery Ontario and digital artist Alex Mayhew demonstrated an innovative use of RA technology. When visitors placed their phone or tablet screens on a classic work of art, an iteration of Mayhew would transpose the same scene and themes into a 21st century setting (books, for example, could be replaced by smartphones). ligents, a pastoral landscape with traffic and pollution).

At the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC, visitors could use an app called Skin and Bones to recreate creatures in RA by pointing their phones at their exposed fossils or skeletons.

Some concerns were expressed about the potentially isolating / exclusive pitfalls of incorporating RA technology into museums: could older viewers use the technology? Would spectators be isolated while experiencing the RA elements of the works instead of enjoying the exhibitions as a collective activity? These concerns, however, have proven to be unfounded.

Dedicated applications and how the pandemic changed the use of RA in art

While fixed installations, public art tours, and museum / gallery exhibitions have long used AR, the COVID-19[feminine[feminine the resulting pandemic and blockages, social distancing, and personal isolation presented a new reality for the art world.

If visitors could no longer go works of art, maybe AR could help you bring the works of art for them.

One name that often appears in this regard is “Art Acute,” an app start-up founded in 2017. Curator and critic Daniel Birnbaum began collaborating with artists to create more RA and VR works from the 2019; when Acute decided to focus on its RA app to reach home viewers, the events after March 2020 made “this move seem accurate,” as writer Samantha Culp points out. According to reports, the app has had more than half a million downloads and allows AR elements of storytelling, audio and film about works by artists.

The University of Chicago is among the institutions that used AR technology to bring art to people’s homes during the pandemic. Previously, the university had collaborated with artist Jenny Holzer on her project You are my ally, in which college campus pedestrians could use their phones to project text from Holzer’s work on campus buildings with the help of a free app. When the pandemic hit, the university and Holzer allowed spectators to project works of art into their own spaces.

One model that is increasingly being preferred is a hybrid model: site-specific installations and AR experiences that viewers can enjoy wherever they are. As travel continues to be limited and with cash control in public spaces as a security measure, AR technology that brings art to people will continue to have a greater impact.

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