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Old Masters in Second Life

June 22, 2007

Why would a visit to a 3D reproduction of a work of art be better that a 2D representation of a piece of art work? It’s all about the relationship of the body to the image.

How often have you looked at a famous painting in the flesh and been a little puzzled because you had imagined it bigger or smaller? Although the size of a piece might be described in catalogues and books you do not have a feel for the piece until you see it in relationship with your body. In other words the scale and how that scale is perceived is important. Of course seeing the work in life is the best way to view a piece but I have been quickly convinced that encountering it in a virtual 3D world is of great educational value.

The Dresden Gallery in Second Life is a sim-sized reproduction of the Zwinger Palace in Dresden, Germany. More importantly, the sim reproduces one of the world’s most famous museums, the Old Masters Picture Gallery (Gemäldegalerie Alte Meister) of the Dresden State Art Collection located inside the Zwinger Palace. So you can enjoy this collection in its architectural setting.

According the website the Old Masters Picture Gallery is the first museum of its kind to open its virtual doors and display works to scale. In this sim you can view great masterpieces of key importance for the history of art. Major works by artists such as Giorgione, Titian, Canaletto, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Poussin, and Watteau are to be viewed in this virtual world. By clicking on the paintings important information about each work is displayed in a note card.

The SLURL is Dresden Gallery (123,128,26).
Or in Second Life click on Search, select Places, and enter “Dresden” as the keyword teleport there and follow the red carpet.

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