How galleries and art fairs find their way into virtual reality

With the outbreak of COVID-19 came a standstill in museums, galleries and art fairs around the world. In order to limit the spread of Corona, the houses and halls had to close. However, in order not to deny the art world access to artists and thought leaders for too long, augmented reality and virtual reality quickly came into play.

Immersive media make it possible to view the works of well-known artists and, similar to the gallery, also directly award them a prize. As the online portal Wallpaper reports, many of the trade fairs and art houses are becoming extremely creative in transferring the physical experience into the virtual world.

The team at Frieze, a New York art fair, began moving their fair into the virtual world soon after Corona broke out. Here, galleries were able to show special projects and selected exhibits and make them accessible to viewers via virtual reality. A solution not only planned for the times of the pandemic, but also to add pieces to the exhibition in the future that could not be physically present.


“As soon as it was clear that we had to cancel the physical Frieze New York, we simply changed the entire structure and the way you would view the galleries.”

The resulting Frieze Viewing Room is a virtual reality experience with 200 galleries and 30 exhibits each. Digital visitors can walk from booth to booth and explore the artworks from their own homes.


ArtLab by Hauser & Wirth (Source: Hauser & Wirth)


Even large galleries are moving their exhibits to VR and AR. For example Hauser & Wirth-is also increasingly involved in the planning and visualization of exhibitions. With an internal task force for digital change, the gallery is thus responding to the artists’ call to open up to the immersive world and allow digital innovations into their house.

These are just a few examples of how the art world will change through virtual reality. COVID-19 is one of the drivers of change, but long before the pandemic, many homes realized that the future of the creative world lies in the virtual world.


Post Picture: Hauser & Wirth / Wallpaper

Alexander Pinker
Alexander Pinker
Alexander Pinker is an innovation profiler, future strategist and media expert who helps companies understand the opportunities behind technologies such as artificial intelligence for the next five to ten years. He is the founder of the consulting firm "Alexander Pinker - Innovation Profiling", the innovation marketing agency "innovate! communication" and the news platform "Medialist Innovation". He is also the author of three books and a lecturer at the Technical University of Würzburg-Schweinfurt.

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