Child’s play: the secrets of the National Gallery unlocked with the app


The Keeper of Paintings and the Palette of Perception uses augmented reality technology to let kids explore artwork, solve puzzles, and unlock stories about certain paintings.

The free app, designed in collaboration with a Kent school group, introduces children to the world of Guardians, magical beings tasked with caring for the world’s treasures. It was created by immersive experience company Arcade, which has worked with locations ranging from the London Aquarium to the Imperial War Museum.

Lawrence Chiles, Head of Digital at the gallery, said: “It is fantastic that we are able to launch our first app dedicated to children. It’s a really rich experience and it’s been such a rewarding process to co-design it with the kids who participated.

“Arcade, the children and all the partners involved have created something truly magical.”

This is not the first time that the Trafalgar Square gallery has used new technologies to highlight its greatest works. Last year, he brought in tech experts to create a virtual-reality medieval church to house a 16th-century painting originally commissioned to hang above an altar in Italy.

Art lovers donned virtual reality headsets to see the frescoes and architecture that originally surrounded the work, as well as hear an actor playing an Italian abbot explain why the painting was commissioned.


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