Google Earth, which allows web-users to look at satellite images of practically anywhere on the planet, is now offering a virtual tour of one of the world’s leading art galleries.
Viewers will be able to scroll around a three-dimensional representation of the Prado Museum in Madrid and examine in the finest detail fourteen masterpieces by artists including Velazquez, Fra Angelico and Goya.
A spokeswoman for Google Earth said the paintings had been photographed in very high resolution and contained as many as 14 gigapixels.
“With this high-level resolution you’re able to see such fine details as the tiny bee on a flower in The Three Graces by Rubens and delicate tears on the faces of the figures in The Descent From The Cross by van der Weyden,” she said.
The arts correspondent in the Guardian newspaper in the UK, Jonathan Jones, applauds the new technology, but says there are many things about the Prado that can’t be rendered digitally. “The world’s greatest museum bar, for one thing, and the atmosphere of its galleries.”
If you’re heading to the Spanish capital to see the art treasures ‘for real,’ book a luxury Madrid hotel through Luxique. We offer nearly two dozen, many of which are within walking distance of the Prado.
by Andy Moreton