For the art lovers out there, most of you will never own a Rembrandt painting (one recently sold for over 33 million dollars). However, you can walk around in one thanks to AR.
Art fans can step inside and explore Rembrandt’s “The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp” in an augmented reality experience by way of their smartphones. It’s called the Rembrandt Reality app and was made by Amsterdam based Capitola VR.
Created in 1656, the painting depicts a human dissection of a recently deceased criminal. It’s considered one of the artist’s early masterpieces. The real painting is actually on display at the Mauritshuis museum in the Netherlands.
Rembrandt Reality in Your Living Room
So we aren’t really huge art aficionados here at YellRobot but the Rembrandt Reality app was pretty awesome. We were able to walk around and explore the painting at every angle right in our office. Users are able to interact with holographic 3D objects that have been scanned from a real-life reconstruction of the painting.
Benefits of Virtual Reality
By using smartphones, they can examine and trigger various animations of elements in the scene. The app also includes audio-based guidance if the user desires.
“The AR app offers people a different way of exploring art both visually and on an educational level. As you ‘physically’ step into the painting you are fully immersed and learn its history while exploring the way it was created by one of the world’s most famous painters.” said Capitola VR’s head of digital David Robustelli.
Capitola VR 3D Scanned Each Element of Famous Painting
Nintendo’s Virtual Boy 3D Gaming Console. Similar to SEGA, Nintendo also had the vision of putting out a Virtual Reality headset for the gaming market. They even went as far as putting a VR headset on the market, but unfortunately it didn’t make it far. Released in the mid 1990s and known as the Virtual Boy, the device was a 3D gaming console that had a 3D viewing system rigged out to look like virtual reality. While it was way cheaper than the other options on the market at the time, the device also didn’t manage to truly spark the VR movement, simply because it lacked head-tracking and quality graphics and only offered stereoscopic 3D display.
To bring the painting to life, Capitola VR selected models to pose as each of the characters in the scene, using makeup and 17th-century costumes to make them appear as similar to the painted figures as possible.
A 3D scanner made up of 600 reflex cameras was used to scan each actor and the recreated setting. The scans and textures were then combined and fine-tuned in a 3d modeling program. Various lighting effects were added to help recreate Rembrandt’s characteristic painting style while particle effects were included to imitate the look of dust illuminated by beams of light.
“Using augmented reality technology, you can enter the anatomical theatre through a portal, whether you are at home or outside. You become a witness to a seventeenth-century anatomy lesson and look over Rembrandt’s shoulder,” said Emilie Gordenker, director of the Mauritshuis.
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