Online virtual tours of Art Galleries and Museums

As a community based organization, we strive to bring great art to our Cowichan Valley Community. As we all deal with the Corona virus, CVPAG will be doing this in a different context. On this webpage, we will be adding links to exciting international exhibitions for you to explore from the comfort of your own home, along with links to sites featuring great artists past and present.

Google Arts & Culture has partnered with more than 500 cultural institutions to offer ‘virtual museum exploration’, following the temporary closure of thousands of art galleries and museums in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

An online platform designed to provide public access to gallery and museum collections across the globe, Google Arts & Culture uses the same technology developed for Google Maps Street View to enable users to ‘walk’ through world-famous galleries and museums and explore

collections and exhibits, via clickable artworks offering further information, from the safety and comfort of their own homes.

source: Google Arts & Culture

“This is a very deep dive…consider having a friend promise to call you in a few hours (just to break the spell).”

– Dorian Melton, PR Chair, Cowichan Valley Public Art Gallery

The Royal B.C. Museum is one of Canada’s leading museums and research centres, a showcase of 550 million years of natural history and 9,000 years of human history in B.C.”

source: Royal B.C. Museum

“Anyone interested in the history of British Columbia will be well rewarded by time spent investigating the online offerings of this museum. It has been some time since I have been able to visit in person, and now that the museum is closed due to the current pandemic crisis, I am looking forward to re-acquainting myself through their extensive online offerings.”

– Dorian Melton, PR Chair, Cowichan Valley Public Art Gallery

“MOA is committed to promoting awareness and understanding of culturally diverse ways of knowing the world through challenging and innovative programs and partnerships with Indigenous, local and global communities. MOA’s exhibitions and programs emphasize artistic diversity and the links between art, community and the contemporary social and political context in which youth, artists and communities are communicating their cultural traditions.”

source: UBC Museum of Anthropology

Popularly known as the Casa Azul (the ‘Blue House’), the Museo Frida Kahlo preserves the personal objects that reveal the private universe of Latin America’s most celebrated woman artist.”

source: Frida Kahlo Museum

Biography: Frida Kahlo
Think you know Frida?

Note of interest: 
“One of the most interesting characters in the arts world is Frida Kahlo. She contained an extraordinary spirit that would not be stifled. Her story fascinates me. After she lost a leg due to a carriage accident in 1953, she devoted herself to her painting. Kahlo created her own wonderfully unique style, immediately recognizable.”

– Jock Hildebrand, President Cowichan Valley Public Art Gallery

Home to the most extensive collection of Henry Moore artworks, the Henry Moore Foundation’s collection is housed at the artist’s estate in Hertfordshire. The collection is made up of around 15,000 objects including sculptures, maquettes, drawings, prints, tapestries and textiles.

source: Henry Moore Foundation

Note of interest: 
“As a young art student, fascinated with sculpture, I came across Henry Moore. It was immediately love at first sight with his Sculpture. Authenticity comes to mind when I view his work. There is solidarity of form, the innate sense of a brilliant mind creating original work that I find so appealing. He is in many ways the father of contemporary sculpture.”

– Jock Hildebrand, President Cowichan Valley Public Art Gallery

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, museums and cultural institutions across the globe are closing their doors to the public. But while visitors can no longer roam the halls of these institutions, virtual tools and online experiences mean anyone with an internet connection can browse world-class collections from home.

The Smithsonian Institution, of course, has its own array of virtual tours, experiences and educational resources. Among the other experiences on offer: Scroll through an extensive trove of 3-D photographs from the Minneapolis Institute of Art, explore online exhibits from the National Women’s History Museum in Virginia, or admire artistic masterpieces from the Dalí Theatre-Museum in Spain.

Additionally, around 2,500 museums and galleries, including the Uffizi Galleries in Florence and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, are offering virtual tours and presenting online collections via the Google Arts and Culture portal.

For those in search of armchair travel inspiration, Smithsonian magazine has compiled a list of ten museums that have found new ways to fulfill their critical mission of cultivating creativity and spreading knowledge.”

source: Smithsonian Magazine

Note of interest: National Gallery

This 100 year old (plus!) painting could appear to represent any number of locations here in B.C., on the West Coast of Canada.   Timeless.

  • Coastal scene – circa 1892 by Belgian artist, Théo van Rysselberghe.

source: National Gallery, London, England

Positive visitor review

  • Tania Delgado – “I absolutely loved it. The on-site guides are knowledgeable and kind. I appreciated how they suggested additional works of art based on my particular interests. It was well worth my time to visit. There is so much material on the free access floors, but I would gladly make a donation on a regular basis or pay for the special exhibits. The description of the paintings was much more robust and engaging than other museums I visited.”

Negative visitor review

  • Azul – “Rude disgusting door person I didn’t realise there was a bag check I was shouted at by the bag checker I said “what” his response you need to learn some manners I don’t see a problem with saying what he was considerably irate and was talking whilst eating spitting food out absolutely revolting.
    I left and will be cancelling my membership if there going to have bag checks they should be consistent and have them all the time some days they don’t have one absolutely ridiculous.”

The Art Institute of Chicago is a world-renowned art museum housing one of the largest permanent collections in the United States. An encyclopedic museum, the Art Institute collects, preserves, and displays works in every medium from all cultures and historical periods as well as hosts special exhibitions. With a collection of more than 260,000 artworks and artifacts, the museum has particularly strong

holdings in Impressionist and Post-Impressionist painting, early twentieth-century European painting and sculpture, contemporary art, Japanese prints, and photography.

source: The Art Institute of Chicago

Note of interest: Black Cross, New Mexico

“I saw the crosses so often—and often in unexpected places—like a thin dark veil of the Catholic Church spread over the New Mexico landscape,” said Georgia O’Keeffe about her first visit to Taos, New Mexico, in the summer of 1929.

  • Black Cross, New Mexico – 1929, by American artist, Georgia O’Keeffe.

source: The Art Institute of Chicago

“As the Covid-19 pandemic currently sweeps the World, this image of a Black Cross grabbed me the instant I saw it. It reminds me that the “story” of any particular image is in constant flux, acquiring additional layers of meaning.”

– Dorian Melton, PR Chair, Cowichan Valley Public Art Gallery

Positive visitor review

  • Shelley Aranas – “You could get lost for hours in this wonderful museum. The back of the map provides a great highlights guide so you can jump around to the more notable works. I recommend the audio tour.”

Negative visitor review

  • Mikaela York – “Great exhibits. Like a maze to navigate. Extremely rude staff. Children literally running around like it was a playground. There were teenagers vaping marijuana inside the exhibits. The exhibit staff at some points were just speaking very loudly about their personal lives which really ruins the museum ambiance.”

The Art Assignment is a weekly PBS Digital Studios production hosted by curator Sarah Urist Green. We explore art and art history through the lens of things happening today. Check for new episodes every other Thursday!

Mark Rothko on art

  • “The artist invites the spectator to take a journey within the realm of the canvas… Without taking the journey, the spectator has really missed the essential experience of the picture.”
  • “I am here to make you think. . . . I am not here to make pretty pictures!”
  • “There is only one thing I fear in life, my friend: One day, the black will swallow the red.”

Jackson Pollock on art:

  • -on studying under Thomas Hart Benton at Manhattan’s Art Students League…”He drove his kind of realism at me so hard I bounced right into non-objective painting.”
  • “There was a reviewer… who wrote that my pictures didn’t have any beginning or any end. He didn’t mean it as a compliment, but it was. It was a fine compliment.”
  • “I want to express my feelings, not illustrate them.”

Love the art. Hate the artist.

Can you separate the art from the artist? This one’s In honor of all the art you used to love, and it’s creators who ruined it by behaving badly. We talk Picasso, Nanette, cats out of bags, and much more