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The Met invites you to play a game, and then ‘borrow’ a work of art

The Temple of Dendur, as experienced through the Metropolitan Museum of Art's new virtual and gaming experience Courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Verizon

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is challenging virtual visitors to forage through nearly 50 works of art in its galleries and then play games that can potentially unlock augmented reality (AR) versions of the pieces that can be experienced at home. All that is needed is a 4G or 5G smart device.

The experience, dubbed The Met Unframed, was rolled out today in cooperation with Verizon through its 5G Ultra Wideband technology and invites users to scour more than a dozen digitally rendered galleries that evoke or nearly duplicate spaces across the museum, starting with the Great Hall, where Kent Monkman’s monumental diptych mistikôsiwak: Wooden Boat People has been on view since December 2019.

The institution casts the opportunity as a way of bringing an immersive art experience to people who might be unable to visit the museum. Among the highlights are such works as the Temple of Dendur, completed by 10BC, Jackson Pollock’s Autumn Rhythm (Number 30) from 1950, Rembrandt’s 1660 self-portrait and five paintings by Jacob Lawrence.

The Met says that four of the AR works of art are enhanced with features accessible to users on Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband, with its high-speed capability. The virtual experience will last for five weeks.