Art State of Mind

The Best of the Best Museums to Visit Virtually on Lockdown (Constantly Updated)

Zuzanna Stańska 20 March 2020 min Read

So, we have a pandemic. The world is locked down. The museums are closed. While we should all be staying home, we have prepared a list of the best of the best museums to visit virtually and it will be constantly updated!

Best Museums to Visit Virtually on Lockdown

What can we do to draw our thoughts away from this unexpected twist of fate, stay sane and feed our eyes with beauty and inspiration? Well, as always we at are here at your service. Also, some museums are organizing special online activities like virtual lectures or workshops. But what we really should be thankful for is DIGITALIZATION. We have been working with museums around the world for the past 8 years and what we can really be very professional about are… MUSEUM LINKS! Here you will find a list of the best of the best museum websites, where you can find more art, more stories, more inspiration and knowledge in the times of coronavirus. If there is a website we didn’t include here and is worth mentioning, please add it in the comments!

You know, #OnlyArtCanSaveUs. And calmness. Enjoy this list of the best museum collections online!

1. Metropolitan Museum of Art

One of the best museum collections in the world has one of the best museum websites, with open access artworks, timeline of art history and a lot of other content. That is a match!

2. Museé d’Orsay

What could cheer us better than French Impressionism and Post-Impressionism? If you’re up for some absolute classics here is a place to visit: Musee d’Orsay.

3. Van Gogh Museum

One of our favorite museum websites – beautiful van Gogh masterpieces deserves beautiful website right? Meet van Vincent van Gogh, read stories about him and explore the collection of Van Gogh Museum!

4. Rijksmuseum

Couple of years ago Rijksmuseum had been closed because of the huge museum renovation. To compensate that to all art lovers the museum developed a really amazing website with the collection – where in addition you can create some art mashups, print everything and do many many more in a cool tool called Rijksstudio.

5. The J. Paul Getty Museum

That is a real art center! Full of podcasts, videos and of course, masterpieces themselves.

6. Cleveland Museum of Art

We LOVE such projects. A year ago Cleveland Museum of Art created an amazing website full of content – what is interesting, some of the pieces from the collection are available in 3D.

7. Smithsonian Institute

The scope of objects in Smithsonian collections is staggering—from ancient Chinese bronzes to the Star-Spangled Banner; from a 3.5 billion-year-old fossil to the Apollo lunar landing module; from the ruby slippers featured in The Wizard of Oz to presidential memorabilia. 155.5 milion artifacts – that is something.

8. Tate

You know what they say: Tate is always a good idea. On their website you will find the national collection of British art from 1500 to today, and international modern and contemporary art.

9. Nationalmuseum Stockholm

The National Museum Image Archives contain more than a million images. There are images of the museum’s artworks as well as those describing the history of the museum. There are also images of the staff and of other museums’ objects and collections. And some super high resolution images. So much fun!

10. Le Gallerie degli Uffizi

Missing the calmness of the Italian Renaissance? Check Uffizi 🙂

11. Museo del Prado

The Museo del Prado’s website is an absolute gem – with 10,000 works of art and more than 1,800 artists in its collection and other elements within its knowledge store (more than 20,000 accesses to lectures, activities, exhibitions, documents, archives, multimedia and more).

12. Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum

We stay in Spain with Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum website. Full of content: virtual tours, thematic tours and tons of research materials is a very good link to click.

13. Royal Collection Trust

The Royal Collection is one of the largest and most important art collections in the world, and one of the last great European royal collections to remain intact. You can spend hours there and have a sneak-peak what Queen Elisabeth II owns now!

14. State Russian Museum

If you’re up for Russian art, don’t miss State Russian Museum’s website with virtual tours, e-course, online lectures and of course the collection of works of art that were previously kept in the Academy of Arts, the Hermitage as well as in the Winter Palace, Gatchina Palace and Alexander Palace at Tsarskoe Selo. I have one keyword for you: RUSSIAN ICONS (my fav).

15. Art Institute of Chicago

Another amazing collection on a very well designed website. And with tons of classics. Edward Hopper or Grant Wood, anyone?

16. National Museum of Women in Arts

NMWA has a collection of 4,500 artworks by more than 1,000 women artists. That includes acclaimed works by exceptional historical artists such as Mary Cassatt, Lavinia Fontana, Clara Peeters, and Élisabeth Louise Vigée-Lebrun as well as modern and contemporary artists such as Magdalena Abakanowicz, Chakaia Booker, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, and Joana Vasconcelos. Women artists ftw!

17. Pinacoteca di Brera

Pinacoteca di Brera based in Milan is full of the masterpieces available to explore online, also in hyper definition. The high definition allows you to detect even the smallest details and to identify the technical aspects, the subtleties of the pigments, the traces of the drawing, almost reaching the heart and feeling of the artists. You can spend hours there!

18. Museums of the City of Paris

If you miss Paris this website is for you. It includes the collections from the fourteen City of Paris museums – art and history museums, charming museums, artists’ and writers’ houses.

19. Closer to van Eyck

2020 is a year of van Eyck. On this website you can take a closed look to his Ghent Altarpiece and his other amazing works from museum collections around the world. Last time I’ve been there I lost 3 hours.

20. Bosch Project

This multimedia initiative is truly amazing. On the website you can combine three different types of reproduction of Bosch paintings with one another to form interactive views. The upper field of the image shows the painting as it appears to the naked eye – albeit at a higher resolution and with a powerful zoom. The lower area of the image is subdivided, and provides views of the painting produced either by infrared photography or infrared reflectography, depending upon the movements of the mouse.

DailyArt app

It’s an add-on but it may be useful as well. For those of you who don’t know, we also run a mobile app called DailyArt. Everyday we present one piece with a complimentary write up. The app is available for free in 13 languages. Download it here: iOS/Android.

Our List of the Best Museums to Visit Virtually

We try our best to stay calm at home, for example by visiting museum websites or making a list of the best of the best museums to visit virtually! The list will be constantly updated! Stay tuned!

Here’s a full list of our “Lockdown” home entertainment articles. Stay safe and #Stayhome!

7 Entertaining Art History Podcasts to Listen to

10 Best Movies Related to Art for Time Spent in Quarantine

The Best Art Videos for the Age of Quarantine

The Best of the Best Museums to Visit Virtually on Lockdown (Constantly Updated)

Lockdown Artsy Entertainment Toolkit

Virtual Art Repositories – Explore Endless Artworks from Quarantine

Theatre Plays, Opera and Music Online to Keep you Entertained During Lockdown

15 Artsy Books To Read During Self-Quarantine

What to Do with Your Time when in Quarantine? Tips from Art!

Art-Guide to Quarantine by DailyArt Magazine

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