Virtual Gallerie Goes Online With Los Angeles County Museum of Art
SAN FRANCISCO, March 10, 2009 — Virtual Gallerie, LLC (VG), a 3D software and production company that caters to museums, universities, and other cultural institutions, launched the first personalized and interactive multimedia museum tour in virtual 3D online for the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). LACMA now offers their visitors a free multimedia tour on a Nokia PDA that can display still images and educational text, play audio and video commentary, and features a "Favorites" button, which allows visitors to bookmark objects that they can later view from home in a personalized 3D virtual gallery online.
Made possible by a grant from The James Irvine Foundation, LACMA hired VG and two other vendors, Antenna Audio, a museum audio and multimedia content producer, and R.B. Zack & Associates, Inc. (RBZ&A), an application development and database design company, to develop, produce and launch this project. RBZ&A developed the PDA's application, content database and middleware and provided overall project management, Antenna provided the audio and video content on over 150 artworks, and VG created the 3D virtual gallery that is populated by the visitor's Favorites.
"We are always looking for ways to make LACMA as accessible as possible to its patrons," said LACMA's Chief Information Officer Peter Bodell. "The PDA tours make art viewing a more personal experience, and we hope the virtual experience will heighten the enjoyment and education of our visitors."
"Irvine is proud to support this innovative effort to extend the museum experience to new and more diverse audiences," added John E. McGuirk, director of the Arts program at The James Irvine Foundation. "This new technology will teach valuable lessons to the greater arts field about how to better incorporate technology to enhance the visitor's experience."
LACMA's 3D Virtual Gallery is located on the museum's website via a MyLACMA account, enabling visitors to interact with their favorite artworks by examining them up close, moving them around the room, accessing the multimedia content and saving their galleries online. Visitors also can access additional content about each artwork that they didn't see at the museum through LACMA's Collections Online.