Meeting the ‘Mona Lisa’ for an Intimate (Virtual) Rendezvous

Meeting the ‘Mona Lisa’ for an Intimate (Virtual) Rendezvous


PARIS — Mona Lisa’s lingering smile continues to be the exact same, but she is receiving a initially-of-its-variety virtual makeover from the Louvre Museum, which has struggled this year with the acceptance of Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece and the throngs of selfie-snapping travellers.

With a blockbuster Leonardo exhibition speedy approaching, the Louvre and its manufacturing companions are good-tuning a digital fact tour with three-dimensional views of the portrait that glimpse over and above the jostling crowds, the shatterproof glass case and the layers of varnish from restorations and the fading inexperienced patina.

The actual oil on wooden “Mona Lisa” was returned previous week to the skylit Salle des États, to coincide with the Oct. 24 opening of an exhibition marking the quincentennial of the dying in 1519 of Leonardo, master of the Italian Renaissance. During the summer time, though the Salle des États was currently being renovated, the portrait was moved to the Galerie Médicis, which resulted in extreme overcrowding for the reason that of confined obtain. Upset tourists complained about fleeting glimpses and barriers that kept them about 15 ft from the 30-inch-tall portray.

The digital truth tour will be a a lot more personal come upon. The VR tour, made to treatment the trouble of crowds and distance, will be housed in a tiny gallery area in close proximity to the key Leonardo exhibition and aside from the “Mona Lisa.”

The gallery, geared up with 11 headset stations, will give seven-moment virtual tours that begin in a common crush of readers with cell telephones aloft. They lead by way of a gallery of paintings to the portrait of Mona Lisa, the wife of an Italian silk merchant.

“She is seated, and spectators will be dealing with her like a dialogue, experience to face,” stated Dominique de Font-Réaulx, the Louvre’s director of mediation and cultural programming.

In this digital land of Leonardo, spectators finally fly around a valley and jagged hills aboard a wing-flapping glider he sketched (and which appears in the standard exhibition). Ms. de Font-Réaulx famous that the two curators of the main exhibition have investigated all the historic information for the virtual tour narration, which includes the visual specifics of Mona Lisa and her surroundings — from the gentle wave of her hair to her velvet costume to the clay tiles of the loggias of 16th-century Florence.

“It’s patronizing. It is disdain,” Mr. Rykner said. In all places in France, he included, there were “churches and monuments exactly where you can obtain major artwork — like a Velázquez or a Caravaggio.”

“With 3 million euros, you could invest in 3 masterpieces that you could give to the museums in France, so it would be serious artwork for serious men and women,” he stated.

Given that that challenge, Ms. Ireson has moved on to the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia as a deputy director of collections. The Barnes has instituted a system that brings simple headsets to neighborhood libraries to encourage its selection of Impressionist will work, then featuring free bus rides and museum tickets for the next week. About 50 per cent of the contributors have used the no cost passes, in accordance to Ms. Ireson.



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