Date of Award


Document Type

Union College Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Visual Arts

First Advisor

Sheri Lullo




museums, technology, communications, Google, visual literacy


While museums have a distinct responsibility to operate as custodians of the past, they must, at the same time, serve a contemporary audience that is continuously faced with new technologies for accessing and communicating information. In this paper, I discuss the benefits of digital media as a significant didactic tool through which we can interact with and access the artistic past. As many museums have recognized the utility of the Internet for publicizing their collections, I evaluate the theoretical implications of their use of digitally reproduced media to promote collections and design educational programs for the web. I focus specifically on how Google Art Project’s compilation of high-resolution reproductions has enhanced our art viewing experience. I also, however, scrutinize their content and strategize new ways in which Google can improve their current program by developing more participatory opportunities for users. As new digital technologies continue to shape and broaden our standards for visual literacy, web-based programs assert themselves as viable options for achieving greater outreach and providing relevant experiences that cater to the needs of a vast and diverse contemporary audience.