A number of existing museums and art galleries have begun to use virtual reality (VR) to allow more people to experience their exhibits, including the British Museum and MOCA Los Angeles. An artist has taken this concept a step further, and has created a museum that exists only within VR.
The Kremer Museum is a project created by Dutch art collector George Kremer and his son, Joël Kremer, who acts the director for his father’s art collection, which consists of 74 pieces of Dutch and Flemish masterpieces dating from the 17th Century. Joël was previously employed in the technology sector, and was employed at Google, and has decided to blend his family’s art history with his knowledge of technology.
Speaking to the Art website Artsy, Joël said that the Kremer family were originally considering building a traditional museum, but were concerned about reaching people who would be unable to travel to Holland, where the collection is based: “The best museums in the world do nine to 10 million visitors a year, and whilst that is amazing, compared to the world population, it’s limited,” said Joël. But an important question remained: “If we actually did this in VR, could it be good enough?”
Joël commissioned architect Johan van Lierop to design the virtual environment that would be used to house the virtual recreations of the paintings. To translate those painting into VR, photogrammetry was used, with thousands of high-resolution photographs of each painting being taken to create the 3D replicas of each picture. Digital recreations of George Kremer and other art experts were also created to give visitors to the VR museum information on the history of the paintings.
The goal was to create a VR environment that was constructed and lit in such as way as to perfectly showcase and accentuate the details and unique features of each painting. The lighting can even be adjusted for the height of each user, and each painting can be examined from any angle, and in some cases, even the X-Ray will be available to view in some cases.
Further information on the Kremer VR Museum can be found on the official website.
VRFocus will continue to report on new and innovative uses of VR technology.