Virtual museum of Fine Arts

It is the project with 10 years long digital history and with about the century physical world story. The Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts is a museum complex that is currently in possession of one of the largest world art collections from Ancient Egypt and Greece to our days. Today the holdings of the museum contain around 700 000 art works of different epochs. Museum has one of the most famous collections of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings in the world.

The idea of creating a Museum quarter on Volkhonka Street was conceived by Ivan Tsvetaev, the founder of the Museum. In 2014, a competition was held for the architectural concept of the Museum quarter, in which the project of the "Meganom" bureau under the name " Rhizosphere " won. After the completion of the reconstruction project, nine museums will operate on the territory of the Museum Town. In each of them, spaces for permanent exhibitions and temporary exhibitions, storage facilities, shops, lecture halls, public areas, a cafe. Area of the Pushkin Museum. A.S. Pushkin will increase more than twice - to 105,000 square meters. The number of visitors to the Museum Town will exceed 3 million people annually.

So, this project is a very complex and challenging. We developed very special tool for dealing with this challenge. Curators plan their future museum right now. Architects and museum managers test their ideas in virtual environment before building physical museum. City managers understand project status and museum staff suggestions. Citizens understand the future of museum quarter in their city. Virtual visitor can see very large museum collection already when they want it to see and where they want it to see. And finally other museums and interested children can learn museum business using this ultra detailed 3D model. Now it is the largest 3D model of whole museum around the world.

For achieving joint design process with museum staff, architects, builders, government and other stakeholders we developed virtual interactive 3d model of whole museum quarter. It is very large and detailed 3D model (5 levels of detail from bird eye to walk). This system was already used for Olympic games, largest transport hub La Sagrera in Barcelona and many other large-scale projects, but it was the first museum implementation for system like this. Every member of project team can simulate his work using this 3D interactive tool. Place pictures, statues, security guards, lights, cafes, chairs and many other items. 3D model has 4 states: 2016 and 2025 years, day and night.

So, museum staff can compare work of museum in this different state. This approach helps museum to simulate future work in buildings which have not built this time and change project if they found better way to solve challenges. It is a great way to make museum better and build it cheaper. System has the central server. Up to 500 people can design museum simultaneously in real-time. It is like a museum MMORPG, but in real well-known museum. Same application is used for making virtual exhibitions for visitors around the world. Also, special tool in the main app have produced a lot of 360-degree tours based on interactive 3d model. It is a good approach for museum access from mobile devices and ordinary computers. It is available here .

We use virtual reality both for design process and museum demonstration to remote visitors. VR gives us ability to see museum in year 2025 and find design problems much better then ordinary flat screen. In comparison with CGI video or images it is a real tool for testing project hypothesis and simulate future operations in museum. And costs are very low because it is very simple to change interactive environments without rendering expenses. Museum plan it`s future in 2025. It is very important for exhibition with world most valuable heritage like Pre-Raphaelites and others.

More than 3000 children participate in museum programs and planning museum of future. They became young curators and museum understand how new generation will see museum in 2025. Virtual museum became the bridge between past and future.