Tag Archives: Arts & Culture

Something’s coming … “West Side Story” on Google Arts & Culture

“In the olden days, everybody sang.”


Those are the words of Leonard Bernstein, composer behind the iconic musical “West Side Story,” where everyone danced and snapped through the streets, too. Whether you’re a Jet all the way or you side with the Sharks, Tony and Maria’s love story is as poignant today as it was 60 years ago, when the Broadway musical first debuted.


In partnership with Carnegie Hall, the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, the Museum of the City of New York and the National Museum of American Jewish History, Google Arts & Culture is launching a new collection honoring “West Side Story.” Bringing together artifacts and mementos from the making of the musical and movie, behind-the-scenes photographs, and a peek into the modern-day representation of the musical, this collection explores the history, artistic value and social relevance of “West Side Story.” Check it out at g.co/westsidestory and on the Google Arts & Culture app (available on Android and iOS).

Ti Amo Italy: a historic theater takes center stage in a new music video

“Ti Amo.” I love you. The new song from French synth-pop stars Phoenix. The title song from their recently released album “Ti Amo” is a love letter to Italy: from festivals in Sanremo, to singer Franco Battiato, to melted gelato.

In the video for the song, created by La Blogothèque and directed by Colin Solal Cardo in collaboration with Google Arts & Culture, Phoenix’s Thomas Mars abandons his guided tour of the Teatro Bibiena to sneak off and perform with his bandmates Christian Mazzalai, Laurent Brancowitz and Deck D’Arcy, around the stage, in the corridors and boxes of the theater—all shot live on 35mm film in one continuous shot.

Phoenix - Ti Amo (Live in Teatro Bibiena, Mantova)

But the real star of the video is the Teatro Bibiena itself. It’s a stunningly beautiful Baroque theater in the Italian town of Mantua. Measuring just 425 square meters, it seats about 300 people—less than a tenth of New York’s famous Carnegie Hall. Its surprisingly small, bell-shaped space is decorated with a wooden geometric ceiling, dozens of arched boxes and monochrome frescoes. Originally intended as an academic lecture hall when it was built, in the 1760s, guests soon realized that the space had amazing acoustics, and it was then used to house music and theater performances. A 14-year-old Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart even played there!

Phoenix hero

Take a look around the theatre yourself with Street View or browse through the history of this cultural gem on Google Arts & Culture.

Phoenix
Deck D’Arcy, Christian Mazzalai, Thomas Mars and Laurent Brancowitz of Phoenix

Ti Amo Italy: a historic theater takes center stage in a new music video

“Ti Amo.” I love you. The new song from French synth-pop stars Phoenix. The title song from their recently released album “Ti Amo” is a love letter to Italy: from festivals in Sanremo, to singer Franco Battiato, to melted gelato.

In the video for the song, created by La Blogothèque and directed by Colin Solal Cardo in collaboration with Google Arts & Culture, Phoenix’s Thomas Mars abandons his guided tour of the Teatro Bibiena to sneak off and perform with his bandmates Christian Mazzalai, Laurent Brancowitz and Deck D’Arcy, around the stage, in the corridors and boxes of the theater—all shot live on 35mm film in one continuous shot.

Phoenix - Ti Amo (Live in Teatro Bibiena, Mantova)

But the real star of the video is the Teatro Bibiena itself. It’s a stunningly beautiful Baroque theater in the Italian town of Mantua. Measuring just 425 square meters, it seats about 300 people—less than a tenth of New York’s famous Carnegie Hall. Its surprisingly small, bell-shaped space is decorated with a wooden geometric ceiling, dozens of arched boxes and monochrome frescoes. Originally intended as an academic lecture hall when it was built, in the 1760s, guests soon realized that the space had amazing acoustics, and it was then used to house music and theater performances. A 14-year-old Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart even played there!

Phoenix hero

Take a look around the theatre yourself with Street View or browse through the history of this cultural gem on Google Arts & Culture.

Phoenix
Deck D’Arcy, Christian Mazzalai, Thomas Mars and Laurent Brancowitz of Phoenix

Ti Amo Italy: a historic theater takes center stage in a new music video

“Ti Amo.” I love you. The new song from French synth-pop stars Phoenix. The title song from their recently released album “Ti Amo” is a love letter to Italy: from festivals in Sanremo, to singer Franco Battiato, to melted gelato.

In the video for the song, created by La Blogothèque and directed by Colin Solal Cardo in collaboration with Google Arts & Culture, Phoenix’s Thomas Mars abandons his guided tour of the Teatro Bibiena to sneak off and perform with his bandmates Christian Mazzalai, Laurent Brancowitz and Deck D’Arcy, around the stage, in the corridors and boxes of the theater—all shot live on 35mm film in one continuous shot.

But the real star of the video is the Teatro Bibiena itself. It’s a stunningly beautiful Baroque theater in the Italian town of Mantua. Measuring just 425 square meters, it seats about 300 people—less than a tenth of New York’s famous Carnegie Hall. Its surprisingly small, bell-shaped space is decorated with a wooden geometric ceiling, dozens of arched boxes and monochrome frescoes. Originally intended as an academic lecture hall when it was built, in the 1760s, guests soon realized that the space had amazing acoustics, and it was then used to house music and theater performances. A 14-year-old Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart even played there!

Phoenix hero

Take a look around the theatre yourself with Street View or browse through the history of this cultural gem on Google Arts & Culture.

Phoenix
Deck D’Arcy, Christian Mazzalai, Thomas Mars and Laurent Brancowitz of Phoenix

Preserving and celebrating Latino cultures in the U.S.

Last September, before I left my hometown in San Antonio, Texas for a job at Google in New York, I went to a special mass at Mission San José, one of five historic missions in San Antonio. As I walked up to the old wooden doors, I saw Latino families from the neighborhood gathering outside to greet each other. Inside the church, kids settled onto antique pews and the church choir opened their sheet music, accompanied by the familiar sound of a mariachi band.

Now more than ever it's important that we celebrate the culture, influence and experience of Latinos and their crucial role in the social fabric of the United States. Today, we are making that community’s rich history accessible to everyone with our newest Google Arts & Culture collection: Latino Cultures in the U.S.

Exploring how Latino cultures have left their mark on America and inspired the world.
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This is Winston Vargas's "Domino Players," shot in Washington Heights, New York. The photo is featured at the Smithsonian American Art Museum and is now a part of the Latino Cultures in the U.S. Arts & Culture collection.

The collection has more than than 2,500 new artworks and archives and 69 new exhibits that enable you to easily explore the lives of influential Latino figures, learn about Latinidad and U.S. Latino art and experience cultural traditions. 

It includes important Latinos in news and entertainment, the story of iconic New York institution Ballet Hispánico, Puerto Rican baseball players like Roberto Clemente Walker (who also served as a U.S. Marine) and the Dream 9, a group of undocumented young people who changed history. 

You can even visit some of the most vibrant neighborhoods in the U.S.—the homes to and centers of Latino culture—by way of historic photographs or unmissable locations on Google Street View, all from your phone. 

Through Google Arts & Culture you can dive into ultra-high resolution images of iconic Latino murals, such as Diego Rivera’s Detroit Industry from the Detroit Institute of Arts. This tribute to the city’s manufacturing base and labor force of the 1930s is considered the finest example of Mexican mural art in the United States, and the artist himself deemed it the most significant piece of art of his career.

In addition to the online collection, Google is working with educators to create and distribute a curriculum so that more students can learn about Latino history in the U.S. And through Google technologies like Expeditions, students can take virtual field trips and explore important moments in Latino history, discover influential Latino artists, or walk through vibrant Latino neighborhoods.

These stories, creators and everyday heroes are part of our nation’s legacy and we’ve been inspired working alongside our partners to make this content accessible to all on the Google Arts & Culture app (on iOS and Android) and at g.co/uslatinocultures

Bringing together stories from museums, universities and other cultural institutions across the United States, this collection reminds me of how I felt while sitting in Mission San José—in complete awe of the U.S. Latino community’s ability to come together to build something greater than ourselves. It is a characteristic that has and always will define us.

Step inside of music

What if you could step inside your favorite song and get a closer look at how music is made? That’s the idea behind our new interactive experiment Inside Music.

The project is a collaboration with the popular podcast Song Exploder and some of our favorite artists across different genres—Phoenix, Perfume Genius, Natalia Lafourcade, Ibeyi, Alarm Will Sound, and Clipping. The experiment lets you explore layers of music all around you, using spatial audio to understand how a piece of music is composed. You can even turn layers on and off, letting you hear the individual pieces of a song in a new way.

It’s built using technology called WebVR, which lets you open it in your web browser, without installing any apps. You can try it on a virtual reality headset, phone or laptop. And we’ve made the code open-source so that people who make music can create new interactive experiments.

Watch the video above to learn more, and check it out at g.co/insidemusic.

Wonders of Malta and Google Street View to enrich Malta’s digital profile

The reasons people travel haven’t changed much over the years. But how we look for information, about where we’ll go or what the local customs are has increasingly moved online. Google Trends tells us that the majority of tourism-related search queries are general--things like hotels or transportation options. But in Malta, called the “Gem of the Mediterranean,” as much as 43% of total tourism-related queries are focused on cultural attractions, historical sights, and famous buildings.

This kind of demand for information doesn’t just help Malta’s visitors find what they’re looking for--it has become a concrete opportunity for local tourism businesses and for cultural institutions to grow their audiences online.

There’s more. According to a soon-to-be-released report “The Impact of Online Content on European Tourism” carried out by Oxford Economics for Google in Southern European countries, clear and accessible online information can power growth in local economies. This in turn leads to new job creation and further GDP growth. This is particularly true and relevant for countries like Malta where tourism remains a significantly important economic sector, accounting for up 26% of the national GDP.

With this in mind we worked with Heritage Malta to create the “Wonders of Malta” project on Google Arts & Culture. This is a unique collection offering viewers from across the world the opportunity to experience the most spectacular collection of Maltese treasures all in one place, at g.co/wondersofmalta.

From your smartphone or PC you can now walk across the Ġgantija Temples, the oldest, free-standing monument in the world, or immerse yourself in the Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum, considered one of world’s most important prehistoric monuments. In a few taps on your smartphone you can move to Valletta and visit the National Museum of Archaeology and its rich collections. The Wonders of Malta project is made of more than 600 new assets, including photos, videos and other documents, 13 super-high resolution “gigapixel” images, more than 35 new exhibits, as well as 28 cardboard tours that will guide users through the diversity and richness of the Maltese culture.

That’s not all. After driving more than 2,500 kilometres across all of Malta and Gozo and taking thousands of 360 degree pictures of many locations, starting today we are also making Street View available in Malta. Users can get an immersive look at the maltese natural landscape, cultural and historic sites, including heritage and touristic attractions, from Valletta to St. Julian’s and Victoria as well as many others, through panoramic street-level images.  Organisations and businesses can also benefit from the Street View technology. The street-level imagery of the location in fact can help them promote and increase awareness of their business - whether it’s a restaurant, hotel, local attraction or any other point of interest.
Street View Malta
Street View in Malta

Whether you’re a student looking to improve your digital skills, or a visitor interested in knowing more about Malta, with the help of Google technologies and platform and the great contents provided by our partners we believe we are contributing positively not only to Malta’s digital profile but to the further development of its cultural and economic life. 

Wonders of Malta and Google Street View to enrich Malta’s digital profile

The reasons people travel haven’t changed much over the years. But how we look for information, about where we’ll go or what the local customs are has increasingly moved online. Google Trends tells us that the majority of tourism-related search queries are general--things like hotels or transportation options. But in Malta, called the “Gem of the Mediterranean,” as much as 43% of total tourism-related queries are focused on cultural attractions, historical sights, and famous buildings.

This kind of demand for information doesn’t just help Malta’s visitors find what they’re looking for--it has become a concrete opportunity for local tourism businesses and for cultural institutions to grow their audiences online.

There’s more. According to a soon-to-be-released report “The Impact of Online Content on European Tourism” carried out by Oxford Economics for Google in Southern European countries, clear and accessible online information can power growth in local economies. This in turn leads to new job creation and further GDP growth. This is particularly true and relevant for countries like Malta where tourism remains a significantly important economic sector, accounting for up 26% of the national GDP.

With this in mind we worked with Heritage Malta to create the “Wonders of Malta” project on Google Arts & Culture. This is a unique collection offering viewers from across the world the opportunity to experience the most spectacular collection of Maltese treasures all in one place, at g.co/wondersofmalta.


From your smartphone or PC you can now walk across the Ġgantija Temples, the oldest, free-standing monument in the world, or immerse yourself in the Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum, considered one of world’s most important prehistoric monuments. In a few taps on your smartphone you can move to Valletta and visit the National Museum of Archaeology and its rich collections. The Wonders of Malta project is made of more than 600 new assets, including photos, videos and other documents, 13 super-high resolution “gigapixel” images, more than 35 new exhibits, as well as 28 cardboard tours that will guide users through the diversity and richness of the Maltese culture.

That’s not all. After driving more than 2,500 kilometres across all of Malta and Gozo and taking thousands of 360 degree pictures of many locations, starting today we are also making Street View available in Malta. Users can get an immersive look at the maltese natural landscape, cultural and historic sites, including heritage and touristic attractions, from Valletta to St. Julian’s and Victoria as well as many others, through panoramic street-level images.  Organisations and businesses can also benefit from the Street View technology. The street-level imagery of the location in fact can help them promote and increase awareness of their business - whether it’s a restaurant, hotel, local attraction or any other point of interest.

Street View Malta
Street View in Malta

Whether you’re a student looking to improve your digital skills, or a visitor interested in knowing more about Malta, with the help of Google technologies and platform and the great contents provided by our partners we believe we are contributing positively not only to Malta’s digital profile but to the further development of its cultural and economic life. 

Wonders of Malta and Google Street View to enrich Malta’s digital profile

The reasons people travel haven’t changed much over the years. But how we look for information, about where we’ll go or what the local customs are has increasingly moved online. Google Trends tells us that the majority of tourism-related search queries are general--things like hotels or transportation options. But in Malta, called the “Gem of the Mediterranean,” as much as 43% of total tourism-related queries are focused on cultural attractions, historical sights, and famous buildings.

This kind of demand for information doesn’t just help Malta’s visitors find what they’re looking for--it has become a concrete opportunity for local tourism businesses and for cultural institutions to grow their audiences online.

There’s more. According to a soon-to-be-released report “The Impact of Online Content on European Tourism” carried out by Oxford Economics for Google in Southern European countries, clear and accessible online information can power growth in local economies. This in turn leads to new job creation and further GDP growth. This is particularly true and relevant for countries like Malta where tourism remains a significantly important economic sector, accounting for up 26% of the national GDP.

With this in mind we worked with Heritage Malta to create the “Wonders of Malta” project on Google Arts & Culture. This is a unique collection offering viewers from across the world the opportunity to experience the most spectacular collection of Maltese treasures all in one place, at g.co/wondersofmalta.


From your smartphone or PC you can now walk across the Ġgantija Temples, the oldest, free-standing monument in the world, or immerse yourself in the Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum, considered one of world’s most important prehistoric monuments. In a few taps on your smartphone you can move to Valletta and visit the National Museum of Archaeology and its rich collections. The Wonders of Malta project is made of more than 600 new assets, including photos, videos and other documents, 13 super-high resolution “gigapixel” images, more than 35 new exhibits, as well as 28 cardboard tours that will guide users through the diversity and richness of the Maltese culture.

That’s not all. After driving more than 2,500 kilometres across all of Malta and Gozo and taking thousands of 360 degree pictures of many locations, starting today we are also making Street View available in Malta. Users can get an immersive look at the maltese natural landscape, cultural and historic sites, including heritage and touristic attractions, from Valletta to St. Julian’s and Victoria as well as many others, through panoramic street-level images.  Organisations and businesses can also benefit from the Street View technology. The street-level imagery of the location in fact can help them promote and increase awareness of their business - whether it’s a restaurant, hotel, local attraction or any other point of interest.

Street View Malta
Street View in Malta

Whether you’re a student looking to improve your digital skills, or a visitor interested in knowing more about Malta, with the help of Google technologies and platform and the great contents provided by our partners we believe we are contributing positively not only to Malta’s digital profile but to the further development of its cultural and economic life. 

We wear culture: Discover why we wear what we wear with Google Arts & Culture

Are you wearing jeans today? Is there a floral tie or a black dress hanging in your wardrobe? Remember those platform shoes from the ‘90s? These have one thing in common: They all tell a story, sometimes spanning hundreds of years of history.

As the legendary Vogue editor-in-chief Diana Vreeland once said, “You can even see the approaching revolution in clothes. You can see and feel everything in clothes.” That’s one reason we’re excited to unveil “We wear culture,” a new project on Google Arts & Culture that brings you the stories behind the clothes you wear.

More than 180 museums, fashion institutions, schools, archives and other organizations from the fashion hubs of New York, London, Paris, Tokyo, São Paulo and elsewhere came together to put three millennia of fashion at your fingertips. You can browse 30,000 fashion pieces: try searching for hats and sort them by color or shoes by time. In 450+ exhibits, you can find stories from the ancient Silk Road to the ferocious fashion of the British punk. Or meet icons and trendsetters like Coco Chanel, Cristóbal Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent or Vivienne Westwood.

We’ve also created virtual reality films bringing to life the stories of iconic pieces. Step inside the places where fashion history lives on YouTube or with a virtual reality viewer:

There's more to clothes than meets the eye. See how shoemakers, jewellers, tie-dyers and bag-makers master their crafts through generations, turning design sketches and tailoring patterns into clothes you can wear. Zoom into ultra-high resolution images made with our Art Camera and see the craftsmanship in unprecedented detail, like this famous Schiaparelli evening coat, a surrealist drawing turned into a bold fashion statement. Step inside the world’s largest costume collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute Conservation Laboratory in 360 degrees, and see what it takes to preserve these objects for future generations. Explore the machinery that keeps one of the largest industries in the world in motion and meet the communities that are built on the production of textiles, like the Avani Society in India.

We also teamed up with YouTube star Ingrid Nilsen to go through the wardrobe and discover even more stories behind the clothes you wear today. Before you hide under your hoodie or put on a pair of ripped jeans, hop over to our YouTube channel to take a closer look at the historic thread running through today's fashions.

“We wear culture” is now live and online at g.co/wewearculture and through the Google Arts & Culture mobile app on iOS and Android. With this project, the world of fashion joins more than a thousand institutions of art and history that share their collections on Google Arts & Culture, letting you explore even more of our culture in one place. Click away and you’ll see how fashion is stitched into the fabric of our societies. And join in the conversation on social media with #WeWearCulture!