Google, Yemisi Shyllon Museum of Art leverage technology to go global
…as YSMA x Google project goes live
Google, through its Google Arts & Culture, is partnering with The Yemisi Shyllon Museum of Art (YSMA), of the Pan-Atlantic University, Lagos, to bring well-curated Nigerian and African visual art to the doorsteps of global art lovers, collectors, corporate organisations and galleries in a project tagged ‘YSMA x Google’, a virtual gallery tour.
The innovative YSMA x Google utilizes high-resolution image technology that enables the viewer to tour Yemisi Shyllon Museum of Art and further explore the artworks’ physical and contextual information.
It offers virtual tours and allows viewers to listen to an audio guide for certain artworks, or to follow a video tour that guided them through a museum.
Apart from the virtual gallery tour, which allows users to virtually walk through the museum using the same controls as Google Street View or by clicking on the museum’s floor plan, the viewers can zoom in on a particular artwork to view the picture in greater detail.
The first rollout of the project features over 25 exciting works by notable Nigerian artists, expositions on art, Yemisi Shyllon and other interesting topics.
For instance, the first slide on titled Uche Okeke’s ‘The Conflict’, takes one on a virtual tour, amid audio guide of Uche Okeke’s enthralling series running into 12 works. The 12 works in a series by Okeke, one of the founders of Zaria Art Society, tell a tale of resistance illustrated by the acclaimed Nigerian artist.
As well, the virtual tour gets more interesting with a slide on Nike Davies-Okundaye’s ‘Cycle of Life’. It explores the life and works of Nike, especially the hidden details in her Adire masterpiece.
Other exciting virtual tour slides include: Yusuf Grillo: Expressions of Yoruba Culture, Yemisi Shyllon Museum of Art, Pan-Atlantic University, 10 Facts You Need to Know About Nok Art 6, Bruce Onobrakpeya’s Rebellion, Kolade Oshinowo’s ‘Nomads’, Art as Protest: Nigerian Society and Politics, among others.
Speaking on the initiative, Michael Oseghale, museum manager, YSMA, noted that the YSMA x Google project is aimed at offering people who cannot visit the museum physically to do so virtually, feel and experience it as if they were physically there due to the technology-enabled virtual tours and audio guides.
He described the initiative as innovative and an evidence of how technology can boost art awareness, appreciation and development amid huge online resources for educational purposes too.
Speaking further, he noted that with the YSMA x Google, according to him, there is no boundary as Nigerian and African art can travel across the world, seen and appreciated by people without necessarily visiting Nigeria or the museum.
He commended Prince Yemisi Shyllon, the foremost art collector and sponsor of the museum for generously donating his numerous and exclusive collections to the museum, as well as, the museum management for adopting world best practice in running the museum, which has attracted the Google partnership.
The partnership is expected to run for a long time.
The Yemisi Shyllon Museum of Art (YSMA), of the Pan-Atlantic University, Lagos, is the first purpose built, privately owned art museum in Nigeria. The 900 sqm museum hosts over 1000 artworks from Prince Yemisi Shyllon’s vast art collection.
Google Arts & Culture is an online platform of high-resolution images and videos of artworks and cultural artifacts from partner cultural organizations throughout the world.
Since 2012, the Google Arts & Culture team has partnered with institutions across the continent to preserve and promote their collections, providing a free online platform that anyone around the world can access. The result is hundreds of expertly curated stories about Africa by Africans. This includes a new project called ‘Cradle of Creativity’ dedicated to the creative history and heritage of Africa. In collaboration with the Yemisi Shyllon Museum of Art in Nigeria and the Origins Centre in South Africa, people across the globe can explore more than five hundred high-resolution images, sixty expertly-curated stories with audio narrations, as well as Street View virtual tours, helping to showcase Africa’s creative talent and heritage.