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Samsung’s Frame TV Now Displays the ‘Mona Lisa’ and Other Louvre Masterpieces

Image: Samsung Frame Television featuring an image from the Louvre Collection

A new partnership between Samsung and the Musée du Louvre in Paris has been announced which will see some of the world’s most famous masterpieces brought to the manufacturer’s Frame TV platform. The South Korean electronics giant makes television sets that do something other than producing a black screen when they are turned off. Although some TV models try to blend in with the background of a room to make them less obtrusive when they’re off, Samsung’s Frame TVs allow high-quality images of artworks to be displayed instead.

The service works in a similar way to digital streaming services whereby a monthly subscription is paid after a free initial bundle of downloads have been obtained by users. Although Samsung caps the amount subscribers will have to pay for the service after a given period, the platform has suffered from a significant drawback – the option to display as many world-class masterpieces as users would like. The deal with the Louvre now looks set to change this.

Top-Quality Artwork

According to Yann Le Touher, the Louvre Museum’s Head of Development, Brand Licensing and Commercial Partnerships, the move represents an exciting partnership for both the gallery and the electronics firm. He said that as a result of the pandemic, everyday life for art lovers had been turned on its head. The public still yearned for cultural pursuits from home even if they were not allowed to visit galleries and museums. As a result, he said that the Louvre had sought out new and innovative methods that would enable people to enjoy the art in its collection.

It was a natural step, therefore, for the Parisian gallery to share its digitised art through the Samsung platform and be enjoyed by as many people as possible. “It is important to share knowledge,” he said. Le Touher went on to add that this meant as many of the works of at the Louvre as possible would become available digitally. “We believe presenting thousands of our artworks via online platforms is useful not just for art lovers but only is valuable for art historians and researchers, as well,” he said.

Limited Choice?

Nevertheless, the Louvre’s wider digitisation programme only encompasses some 40 or so images from its collection that will end up on Samsung’s Frame TV platform. This will probably not put off many pre-existing subscribers because it will add significantly to the collection already available to them. What’s more, the images chosen include some of the most famous ones in the world, including the Venus de Milo, the Winged Victory of Samothrace, a second-century sculpture, and the Mona Lisa by Da Vinci, to name but three prominent examples.

The images available via Frame TV now number in the region of 1,500. This means that the famous works of art chosen from the Louvre’s stunning collection will join others drawn from other notable galleries, such as the Prado Museum in Madrid, the Tate Modern in London, the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam as well as the Albertina Museum in Vienna. According to Samsung, the deal also includes a number of images of the Louvre’s gallery spaces and architecture.

Teaming Up With an Art Institution

According to a statement issued by Samsung, the Louvre Museum has long since cemented itself as a cultural institution that has served as a place of inspiration for numerous artists and art-lovers alike. Le Touher agreed with that sentiment stating that some of the greatest architects, painters and sculptors of their age have not only reimagined what art could be by attending its exhibitions but have also embellished the former royal palace into something entirely unique in the museum world. “Thanks to Samsung’s innovative technology,” he said, “we can offer people the impression of owning a reproduction of their favourite artworks they can view at home.” He went on to add that this would not replace a visit to the museum itself. “We think that [the deal with Samsung].. will bring about inspiration and joy to many homes,” he said.

About the author – Manuel Charr

Manuel Charr is a journalist working in the arts and cultural sectors. With a background in marketing, Manuel is drawn to arts organizations which are prepared to try inventive ways to reach new audiences.

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