The University of Oviedo creates an innovative virtual gallery to exhibit its cultural heritage
February 16, 2012
GAUDEO, which has adopted El Prado and Louvre Museums as a model, includes a virtual tour and images from almost a hundred high-resolution pieces with fully detailed specifications
The University of Oviedo opens the virtual gallery GAUDEO, a cultural project aimed at disseminating and making the historic and artistic heritage of the Asturian institution available to any one through its 400 years of history. Oviedo will be the first Spanish university to include a gallery like this to its website to evaluate its artistic heritage.
GAUDEO is an ambitious project which combines innovation and culture and which has been fully developed by the university's staff. A total of 27 technicians from different areas have collaborated in the design and mounting of the gallery and the virtual tour. This team of professionals has made use of cutting-edge technology and of a special lens from Japan which enables visitors to get a 360 degree view. GAUDEO is available in a bilingual version (Spanish- English), which will provide an international scope.
Representatives from the Asturian political, economic, cultural and social sphere attended the opening ceremony of GAUDEO, held this morning at the Auditorium of the University of Oviedo. The regional minister of Education and Universities, Ana Isabel Álvarez, together with the general director of Cultural Heritage, Joaquín López, the mayors from Gijón, Avilés, Mieres, Castrillón and Langreo and the spokesperson from Oviedo's City Council were also there. The ceremony also counted on the presence of the director of the Prince of Asturias Foundation, Teresa Sanjurjo, the general director of ALSA, Jacobo Cosmen, the director of Hidrocantabria Foundation, Nicanor Fernández, and the general director of Universities, Pilar Castro.
The new virtual gallery of the University of Oviedo, boosted by the vice-rector's office for University Extension, Culture and Sports and with the collaboration of the vice-rector's offices for IT and Communications and Campus of International Excellence, aims to desplay part of its cultural heritage and offer researchers and specialists all over the world a valuable tool to complete their papers. GAUDEO is a clear example of how the University makes not only the knowledge but also the cultural heritage available to the public.
The virtual gallery of the University offers 45 works from different styles, periods and authors. The tour includes the Foundation Altarpiece of the Universitay dated on 1607, a piece on consignment from El Prado Museum, Christ before the People, two religious panels by Rubio Camín, 9 stained glass windows from the Hictoric Building and a gallery of rectors with works, among others, by Paulino Vicente and Joaquín Vaquero Turcios.
What does GAUDEO offer?
GAUDEO offers two options to visitors: Gaudeo Ars and Gaudeo Lapis. The first one includes a photographic gallery of the works of art located in different places within the Historic Building. It includes 90 paintings and graphic works, 5 sculptures, furnishings and other objects. Most of the pieces are not accessible to the public. Gaudeo Ars has adopted virtual galleries from worldwide known artistic institutions, such as El Prado or Louvre Museums, as a model for its development.
The prestigious Asturian photographer José Ferrero has been in charge of taking the photographies which show, with a high-resolution quality, the details of each piece, with enclosed specifications. Besides, in the case of the sculptures, this application allows people to get a 3D view of the piece from all perspectives.
The virtual tour proposed by Gaudeo Lapis, on the other hand, visits the main rooms of the University's Hictoric Building with a 360 degree perspective. Visitors will be able to choose their tour within the building. The virtual tour through the historic head office of the University of Oviedo exposes some special sites which are usually closed to the public. This is the case of the Clocktower, from which a splendid outlook can be made out. Once the visitor enters a room, he will find some instructions to get to the specifications and the gallery of the most outstanding works of art of the place.
A photographic lens linked to Fukushima
The photographic lens used for carrying out the virtual gallery is peculiar in that it is a handmade piece from Japan whose arrival was delayed for a few months due to the tsunami which lashed the country in 2011 and brought production to a halt. Finally, the lens arrived in Asturias the same week in which the Fukushima heroes were given their Prince of Asturias Award in Oviedo.