The Louvre from Your Living Room

The Louvre has had increased visibility lately due to its role in the book and movie “The da Vinci Code.”

While the Louvre is an incredible and inspiring place to visit, what can you do if you live thousands of miles away?

Well, the folks at the Louvre have been nice enough to put every single one of their 35,000 pieces of artwork on their website. Their Atlas database (linked here) allows you to search from the comfort of your own armchair.

So, not only can you view da Vinci’s Mona Lisa… but they also provide links to close-up details of many works. Often, you can get closer to the art online than you ever could in person. (Like watching sports on television – closer than you could at the stadium).

Take a look at the incredible details of the Mona Lisa: her face… of her hands… of her elaborate neckline… her famous smile… of her eyes… (I find it inspiring – and a bit intimidating – to gaze into those eyes!)

You can even take 360° virtual tours of rooms across the museum.

While all of these are not a perfect replacement for looking directly at canvas and brush strokes, it’s a great substitute until you can visit the real thing.

Other great museums also offer similar convenience… Here are links to on-line collections at some of the world’s greatest museums:

Finally, if you want to see a listing of nearly every museum in the world, check out this WWW Virtual Library.

Enough to stir inspiration?